Entrepreneurial Institute

New Extended Team Joins the NYU Entrepreneurial Institute

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We are thrilled to introduce the newest additions to our extended team!

In addition to our dedicated full-time team members at the Entrepreneurial Institute, we welcome new talent annually from our NYU community, including recent graduates and current students who help support our entrepreneurship mission across the University. This extended team includes Founders in Residence, Leslie eLab interns, and Venture Fellows. 

Founders in Residence at the Institute provide personalized coaching to NYU community members at all stages of their startups and guide founders through customer discovery during the Startup Accelerator ProgramSign up for coaching with a Founder in Residence or another member our team today.

Our wonderful interns support daily operations at the Leslie eLab, our physical space on campus located at 16 Washington Place. They help with everything from events to research! 

A full list of our Founders in Residence, Interns, and Fellows can be found here.

Introducing Our New Founders in Residence (FIRs):

Wayne Mackey, PhD, Founder of Statespace (GSAS ‘16)

Wayne is the founder and CEO of Statespace. This platform combines neuroscience, artificial intelligence and video games to improve cognitive function and motor skills. Statespace grew from 30 to 130 employees in one year, partnered with game publishers like Riot and Ubisoft, and its first product, Aim Lab, has over 40 million users. Wayne has since broadened the mission and grown the platform toward improving cognitive and motor skills using video games. 

Wayne has won multiple awards and fellowships from various institutions, including the National Science Foundation, NYU, and the Simons Foundation. He’s also on the advisory board of the Statespace-funded Queer Women of Esports Mentorship Program. 

Kim Mahler, PhD, Founder of Voltela (CUSP Postdoc ‘20)

Kim received his M.Sc. and PhD in EECS from the Technical University Berlin and his M.A. in Leadership in Digital Communication from the Berlin University of Arts. He led wireless innovation projects around vehicular connectivity during his time at the renowned Fraunhofer Institute from 2010 to 2019. Kim joined NYU as a Smart City Postdoc in 2019, where he started his journey as an entrepreneur when he founded Voltela, a company that solves connectivity for commercial drones. After his Runway Postdoc at Cornell Tech (2020-2022), his company was recognized with NSF SBIR grants and the Genius NY award.

Introducing Our New Interns:

Katie Wan (CAS ‘24)

Katie is a senior majoring in Economics with a minor in Business Studies. She is from Shanghai, China, but she would also call New York home. Katie is very interested in learning and helping small businesses, so she is actively involved in related consulting clubs and activities. She also runs a podcast with friends to share various personal growth stories. During her free time, she loves visiting art museums, and she has even tried oil painting before.

Maitri Choksey (Stern ‘23)

Maitri is a junior majoring in Business, Technology, and Entrepreneurship (BTE) with a minor in Computer Science. Her experience working with several startups across fintech, edtech, and AR/VR technologies has equipped her with a diverse range of skills. Her academic journey has blended finance, design thinking, and programming, giving her a multifaceted perspective. Driven by an unwavering passion for startups and innovation, Maitri aims to lead transformative projects that result in innovative solutions and positive change. Outside of her academic interests, she is part of the NYU Dillagi dance team and is an adventure sports enthusiast.

Nicole Natal (Steinhardt ‘24)

Nicole is a senior studying Media, Culture, and Communications, with a minor in Psychology. Nicole was born in Honolulu, Hawaii, but comes from a Peruvian, Spanish-Puerto Rican family, and has moved around the world 10 times. Nicole speaks English and Spanish fluently, and is currently working on her French. Nicole loves to travel, try new things, and carries a wanderlust for life and the world. She is passionate about music and is a singer, and is also passionate about entrepreneurship, fitness, and social impact.

Sofi Pecchio (Nursing ‘27)

Sofi is a Global Public Health and Nursing student. She is passionate about merging healthcare and technology through entrepreneurship. She believes using technology to improve healthcare services and outcomes will advance global health and ensure equitable access to care for all. With a strong passion for patient care and nursing, Sofía understands the importance of trust and commitment in healthcare platforms. She is interested in finding solutions that enhance the collaboration and trust between patients, healthcare teams, and providers. As an intern at the Institute, Sofia is eager to explore and leverage her skills to impact healthcare entrepreneurship significantly.

Introducing Our New Venture Fellow:

Alex Tellides (Wagner ‘25)

Alex is a graduate student at Wagner specializing in Social Impact, Innovation, and Investment (SI3). Prior to serving as a Venture Fellow at the NYU Innovation Venture Fund, he completed VC fellowship experiences at 3SE Capital and Laconia's Venture Cooperative. Alex's previous career experience includes working within the cannabis/food-bev sectors, in roles that ranged from consulting with small businesses and startups to working for house of brands and international operators. He is passionate about doing good for both shareholders and the world at large.