Entrepreneurial Institute

Meet the Teams in the Summer Startup Sprint

Please join us in congratulating the 16 NYU startup teams that will participate in the 2018 Summer Startup Sprint!

This June, the Summer Startup Sprint will offer NYU teams the opportunity to get funding and test the value of their potential solutions. The Startup Sprint is a 2- to 3-week customer discovery and mentorship intensive.

The Startup Sprint is designed to support those who have an idea, perhaps formed a team, or have a project they’ve been working on. Through this intensive,  NYU entrepreneurs can begin to really build out their startups. You can read more about the perks of the program here. They include:


  • A $350 grant (for 2-week participation) or a $700 grant (for 3-week participation), plus an opportunity for select teams to receive up to $2,000 in additional funding
  • $5,000 credit from Amazon Web Services
  • 1:1 coaching from Blackstone Launchpad mentors
  • Lots of startup skills workshops
  • 24/7 co-working space at the Leslie eLab
  • And much more!


Nearly 90 teams applied, representing 16 NYU schools and colleges, with ventures in SaaS, hardware, healthcare/life sciences, and numerous other sectors. Most notable this year, however, was the overwhelming focus on social innovation, including in women’s health, civic action, and diversity initiatives.

See which teams also made it into our marquee Summer Launchpad accelerator.

We are thrilled to welcome and work with these teams!



"Ballotbox is essentially Eventbrite for politics. We create an all-in-one community/event management platform for political campaigns, activists, and grassroots organizers.

Our mission is to use the internet to connect people in the real world where they can build meaningful communities to influence their societies."

Founders: Sebastian Jimenez (Stern '18), Vanessa Chesnut (CAS '18), Tomasz Bachosz (Abu Dhabi '18)


"DigiStrips aims to make a point-of-care diagnostic device for Urinary Tract Infection (UTI) and an analyzer mobile app using a pixel counting algorithm. Our digitized, low-cost, easy-to-use, and biodegradable device would offer users rapid, sensitive, and specific diagnosis that they can get right at home."

Founders: Deniz Vurmaz (Tandon '20), Sayli Modak (Dentistry '15), Shruti Warhadpande (Dentistry '14), Kritika Srinivasan (Medicine '19)

Eckstein Guidewires

"Our venture is the commercialization of a novel medical technology, a vascular guidewire which can vary its stiffness. We will deliver a variable-stiffness guidewire for endovascular procedures. We will target cardiothoracic and vascular surgeons wishing to reduce the complexity of complex endovascular procedures, eliminating 2-3 standard guidewire devices, and improving surgical outcomes."

Founders: Nengi Charles-Ogan (Tandon '19), Octavia Larentis (Tandon '19), Daniel Eckstein (Tandon '18), Akihiko Ishihara (Tandon '19)


G-Ware is the smart fitbit for the aging generation with a care coordination system for comfortable living. G-Ware was an idea conceptualized by a dedicated member of the healthcare field who was frustrated with budding technology intended to encourage health among those already generally healthy.”

Founders: Sachin Shastri (Courant ‘19), Paramjot Kaur (CAS ‘18), Rhea Patel, Amanda Shirley (Nursing ‘19)

Govern for America

"Our mission is to build the next generation of American civil servants and leaders to create more effective and responsive government. We recruit, train, develop, and connect exceptional recent graduates to key roles in state governments across the nation through a two-year fellowship program. Govern for America helps these talented and service-minded individuals find a pathway into high-impact roles in states and equips them with a toolkit to create a culture of effective government."

Founders: Kyleigh Russ (Wagner '19), Octavia Abell


"HealthHuddle is a mobile- and web-centric digital platform for hospitals. We provide critical patient information from EHRs at the bedside for nurses during handoffs,

unit-wide activity summaries for charge nurses, and long-term workflow analytics for quality managers. We aim to eradicate hospital-acquired conditions by equipping care delivery teams with tools to manage their patients' data."

Founders: Sabina Braverman (Wagner '18), Andrew Dempsey (Tandon '19), Danny Silk (Wagner '18), Sushant Thomas (CAS '19)

Merciless Motors

"We are building an improved electric motor that is 90% more efficient, 33% more powerful, and 20% more lightweight than current electric motors. A Merciless Motor can potentially add another 40 miles of range to an electric vehicle."

Founders: Nader Ahmed (Tandon '19), Anna Kotyza (Gallatin '18)

NextGen Bootcamp

"NextGen is a computer science summer bootcamp tailored to high school and college students. During the summer, students will learn the equivalent of 2-4 courses of university level computer science and place into high level internships after the program that we provide."

Founders: Zach Cohen (Gallatin '20)


"Peblio is an instructional tool and lesson sharing platform for middle and high school

computer science teachers. It leverages a mixed media development environment and social platform to provide engaging, active learning experiences to CS students."

Founders: Esther Hersh (Tisch '17), Mathura Govindarajan (Tisch '17), Regina Vetka (Tisch '17)


“Pepper is a direct-to-consumer bra company for small-chested women. Our cups were created using custom molds that minimize depth, eliminating the ubiquitous "gap" that small-busted women typically experience.”

Founders: Lia Winograd (Stern ’19), Jaclyn Fu

Sabai Design

“We produce affordable, deconstructable, and stylish furniture for modern and transient living. Through a buy-back program, we solve the headache of disposal and reselling and offer an even cheaper line of refurbished furniture.”

Founders: Phantila Phataraprasit (Law ’20), Caitlin De Lisser Ellen, Cecily Waud

Smartfire Technology

“We aim to reduce the increasing rate of gun theft in U.S. stores. This will be done by equipping the most vulnerable guns and display units with an electronic tracking system, reducing the number of stolen firearms and decreasing the risk that the gun is used criminally.”

Founders: Richard Vo (Tandon '19), Eirik Humlen (Tandon '19)


“Source is a decentralized software development ecosystem. Source decentralizes the core features of GitHub, StackOverflow and AWS through EOS.IO, allowing developers to build directly on web 3.0 infrastructure, and a cryptocurrency centric platform.”

Founders: Hao Jün Tan (Stern '20), Carlos Santos (Stern '19), Yonatan Medina (Gallatin '18)

The Diversity Org

“The Diversity Org's mission is to combat social issues by uniting people through education, media content and impacting communities. Our diverse team of millennials host high school events, partner with YouTube to create media content and unite people through impact events.”

Founders: Joshua Pierce (Tisch ’18), Daniel Rodriguez (CAS ’18), Claire Laugeois

We are the new Farmers

“The next-gen urban farm growing sustainable produce for specialty markets lacking year-round local supply. With an integrated algae production system, we grow cost competitive produce consistently throughout the year, regardless of season, providing hyper-local food to NYC.”

Founders: Jonas Guenther (Tandon ’18), Michael Udovich (Tandon ’18), Daniel Bernstein

YDK Chinese

“YDK Chinese is a tonal keyboard that helps intermediate and advanced Chinese learners practice and remember tones while typing. Adding on to a regular keyboard, tones are displayed next to all characters.”

Founders: Yifei An (CAS ’19), Kwesi Daniel (CAS ’18), Denis Kaydanov (Tandon ’19)


Starting in June, the Entrepreneurial Institute team, along with our Blackstone LaunchPad network of over 60 entrepreneurs and startup investors, will work with these teams to guide them as they launch their ventures.


Following the Summer Startup Sprint, the 6th annual Summer Launchpad accelerator will kick off! See which of these Summer Startup Sprint teams will also be participating in this year’s Summer Launchpad.