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Summer’s Time to Grow for Startup Founders

Article by Dylan GerstleyJune 11, 2018

SFAnnouncementSmallThe University of Delaware Horn Entrepreneurship Summer Founders program has returned for 2018 with eight student startup teams. The teams represent seventeen students from four colleges. Through Aug. 22 the founders will be working to validate their business models and gain customers.

The Summer Founders program is a 12-week pre-accelerator for students to work on their ventures and receive a stipend. The program includes weekly mentoring and educational sessions in addition to progress meetings with an adviser.

Teams work in the Venture Development Center and have access to free and discounted services.

“The program can be thought of as one part startup accelerator which provide startups with mentorship, advice, and resources to help the startups succeed and one part summer job allowing students to work full time over the course of the summer on their business concepts unencumbered from the demands of an academic year,” said Vince DiFelice, a Horn Entrepreneurship professor who leads the Summer Founders program.

The program includes several finalists from Hen Hatch 2018, including D150 Fueling, a custom fleet fueling venture; Intratext, an interactive text application; and Innovation Showcase participant Patient Sortal, an efficient and safe information provider for the health care industry. Promising startups from around the University were also invited to participate. 

“Horn Entrepreneurship encouraged me to reach out of my comfort zone and embrace a new opportunity,” said Brandon Holly, a rising sophomore and member of Patient Sortal. “The program believed in my passion and determination despite my young age. My partner and I are looking forward to working with Horn Entrepreneurship and all of the mentors and seasoned entrepreneurs.”  

Summer Founders also includes students that have participated in VentureOn and Horn Entrepreneurship Pitch Party competitions. “I am super excited to be a part of Summer Founders,” said Keith Obiero, a member of Cinta's Solutions who also worked on Be[MAN]Kind, a VentureOn startup. “The program will give me an opportunity to learn how to better develop and refine my venture. Being a part of the professional network within the program will also allow me to gain valuable insight regarding my progress. I hope that I can use this opportunity to grow myself as a professional and improve my idea.”

The pre-accelerator, which began in 2016, also welcomes back masters student Garry Johnson, a participant and finalist in Hen Hatch and other Horn Entrepreneurship programs. “Im excited to embark on a journey that Im certain will be nothing short of amazing. Horn provides us with the resources to test and validate our business models in a fun and supportive environment. Its going to be great bonding with all of the other summer founders working to put our ideas into action.”

2018 Summer Founders Participants

Cinta's Solutions: Accounting firm providing services to small scale farmers based in Kisumu, Nyanza, Kenya. Keith Obiero, Lerner College of Business and Economics, Class of 2019; and Pavel Tolkanitsa, Lerner College of Business and Economics, Class of 2019.

D150 Fueling: Custom-built fleet fueling trucks are sent to customers, at customized times and frequencies. Bailey O'Brien, College of Engineering, Class of 2018; Samuel Bacharach, Lerner College of Business and Economics, Class of 2019; and Amedeo DeLuca, College of Engineering, Class of 2018.

IntraText: Platform that transforms and optimizes books and written content for digital consumption to keep readers engaged. Jamie Levy, College of Arts and Sciences, Class of 2018; and Deniz Hatiboglu, Lerner College of Business and Economics, Class of 2019.

Metta House: A social community building venture that focuses on increasing sustainability through transformational music and arts experiences. Davis Pfund, Lerner College of Business and Economics, Class of 2019; Michelle Ramirez, College of Arts and Sciences, Class of 2019.

M&B Booking: Full-service booking agency to provide professional performance opportunities for student and local musicians. Ben Rossman, Lerner College of Business and Economics, Class of 2019; and Jacob Tims, Lerner College of Business and Economics, Class of 2020.

Patient Sortal: Digital application that provides safe, sorted, shareable healthcare information for patients with chronic disease. Brandon Holly, College of Health Sciences, Class of 2021; and Kenny Eck, Lerner College of Business and Economics, Class of 2018.

SolveABET: Provides automation tools for engineering departments frustrated with complex ABET processes. Jonathan Wood, Lerner College of Business and Economics, Class of 2019.

Urbinvest: Invests time and resources to better aid and prepare and underrepresented entrepreneurs. Garry Johnson, Lerner College of Business and Economics, Class of 2018; Aderonke Solanke, Lerner College of Business and Economics, Class of 2018; and Jymere Stillis-Stanford, College of Arts and Sciences, Class of 2020.

 

About Horn Entrepreneurship

Horn Entrepreneurship serves as the University of Delaware’s creative engine for entrepreneurship education and advancement. Built and actively supported by successful entrepreneurs and thought leaders, Horn Entrepreneurship empowers aspiring innovators and entrepreneurs as they pursue new ideas for a better world.

 

 

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