NYU Initiates NYU Summer Launchpad—a 10-week Accelerator Program for Graduating Entrepreneurs

Next Monday, June 3rd, NYU will kick off the NYU Summer Launchpad—a 10-week accelerator program that will provide graduating NYU student-entrepreneurs with the skills, space, funding, and mentoring needed to help them launch commercially viable startup ventures.

Summer Launchpad is an intensive program that will support startup ventures through the notoriously difficult stage of early development and will provide them with resources, personalized instruction, guidance, and connections to increase the likelihood of their success. Participating teams will be steeped in lean startup principles using techniques for testing hypotheses, experimentation, and iteration as they search for a commercially viable business model.

“Accelerator programs provide emerging entrepreneurs the support they need to help them build successful startups,” said Frank Rimalovski, executive director of the NYU Entrepreneurial Institute and managing director of the NYU Innovation Venture Fund. “NYU’s Summer Launchpad offers the best of university and external resources and programs to the selected teams, while enabling them to work side-by-side with leading entrepreneur and investor mentors.”

The Summer Launchpad will take place at the Polytechnic Institute of NYU (NYU-Poly) Varick Street incubator in Lower Manhattan, which was created four years ago in collaboration with New York City to help emerging companies become thriving businesses.

“NYU-Poly and NYU were among the first to design and implement boot camps that help students transform business concepts into successful ventures,” said Katepalli Sreenivasan, president of the Polytechnic Institute of New York University (NYU-Poly). “Technology and education are key to addressing some of the world’s most pressing problems – and the Summer Launchpad will give these student entrepreneurs the tools they need to refine their problem-solving skills and ultimately contribute to the growth of New York City’s innovation economy. When NYU and NYU-Poly become one, as is planned for the very near future, it will unleash an even greater set of possibilities.”

Ten multidisciplinary teams of graduating students from five different schools at NYU (NYU-Poly, Leonard N. Stern School of Business, Tisch School of the Arts, Robert F. Wagner Graduate School of Public Service, and the College of Arts and Science) have been accepted into the inaugural Launchpad class. Each startup team will receive a no-strings-attached stipend of $7,500. The selected teams span web, mobile, and hardware products across the consumer, enterprise, healthcare, and education sectors.

Each Launchpad team will be paired with entrepreneur and venture investor mentors who will work closely with the teams over the course of the summer to help guide them on the path to achieving their own individual milestones. Mentors are drawn from NYU’s alumni base, as well as from the booming New York City startup community. The entrepreneurs and investors who will participate as mentors include: David Tisch, NYU Law ’06, managing partner of Box Group; David Aronoff, general partner at Flybridge Capital Partners; Peter Flint, general partner at Polaris Partners; Alexandre Douzet, SCPS ’99, co-founder and CEO of TheLadders; Paul Berry, Gallatin ’98, Tisch ’03, founder and CEO of RebelMouse and former CTO of Huffington Post, among others.

Launchpad will also feature weekly guest lectures by successful entrepreneurs, investors, and startup experts who will share lessons from their past successes and failures. The program will culminate with an expo-style demonstration day, where teams will showcase their startups to potential collaborators, investors, and partners.

“We believe the NYU Summer Launchpad program will offer graduating NYU student entrepreneurs an exceptional opportunity to benefit from the resources of the University and our strong connections to the broader NYC startup community,” said Lindsey Marshall, programs director of the NYU Entrepreneurial Institute.

The NYU Summer Launchpad is an important addition to a growing array of entrepreneurship programs offered at New York University. NYU already offers a wide range of classes and extra-curricular resources aimed at inspiring, educating, and connecting students and faculty who have an interest in entrepreneurship. The Summer Launchpad builds on the foundational skills provided in the classroom and in programs such as the recently completed $200,000 NYU Entrepreneurs Challenge, and will help drive the success of NYU’s student entrepreneurs long after graduation day.

The 10 teams that have been selected for the inaugural program, and their NYU student founders, include:

BenchPals Simplifies lab management via secure software, creating a new way for scientists to get their lab work done.
Jasmin Hume, NYU-Poly PhD ‘14; Ching Yao Yang, NYU-Poly PhD ‘14

BOT Factory A 3D printer that creates circuits and places electrical components on a wide range of materials to rapidly prototype printed circuit boards (PCBs).Carlos Ospina, NYU-Poly MS ‘13; Nicolas Vansnick, NYU-Poly MS ‘13

Crashdwell An online solution for students to find and offer housing sublets and other short-term rentals. Patrick Yan, Stern BS ‘13; Ran Zheng, Stern BS ‘13

Databetes Self-management support tools for patients with diabetes.
Doug Kanter, Tisch/ITP MPS ‘13; Ryan Viglizzo, Tisch/ITP MPS ‘13

datavisu.al Web-based tool for creating data visualizations to help designers with limited programming skills make beautiful charts and graphs.
Danne Woo, Tisch/ITP MPS ‘13

Ex Vivo Dynamics Chelation filters to remove free iron released in transfused blood, reducing the instance of organ damage to patients receiving transfusions. Alan Perlstein, NYU-Poly MS ‘13

Kinvolved Online applications to increase school attendance, particularly among low-income students, through enhanced parent-teacher communication. Miriam Altman, Wagner MPA ‘13; Alexandra Meis, Wagner MPA ‘13; Barrie Charney Golden, Wagner/Stern MPA/MBA ‘14

Lumiti Platform to help job seekers and hiring companies find their perfect "match", based on skills, experience, and cultural fit. Jerry Hao, Stern MBA ‘13; Soham Sutaria, Stern MBA ‘13

Point Interactive application that makes it easy to share your Internet browsing experience with your friends. Ashwinn Krishnaswamy, Stern BS ‘13; Phil Ditzler, CAS BS ‘13

SalesBUS Online platform the helps product-based companies find a network of salespeople to sell their products and earn supplemental income. Ricky Berrin, Stern MBA ‘13

For more information, please go to the NYU Summer Launchpad web site: http://bit.ly/146d6e2.

About the NYU Entrepreneurial Institute
The NYU Entrepreneurial Institute empowers entrepreneurs from idea to impact. Founded in 2012, the Institute offers educational programming, events, resources, and funding, via the NYU Innovation Venture Fund, to inspire, educate, connect, and accelerate entrepreneurs across NYU.