Five ventures founded by Yale School of Management students were among the winners at Startup Yale 2022, held April 28 to 30.
Startup Yale is the university’s biggest entrepreneurship awards. The annual event includes three days of venture pitches and celebrations and convenes Yale innovators, community leaders, investors, and practitioners across a spectrum of industries.
Finalist teams in both the for-profit and nonprofit sectors pitched their ventures to panels of experts, academics, entrepreneurs, and investors. More than $135,000 in cash prizes were awarded during the virtual ceremonies.
The Yale SOM winning student teams include:
- Frailty Myths, winner of the Yale Innovators Prize Grand Prize, which awards $15,000 to a startup that has the potential to produce the greatest impact—financially, socially, or otherwise.
Frailty Myths is a diversity, equity, and inclusion consultancy that uses the power of practice, community leadership, and experiential learning to transform workplace culture and advance justice.
“It’s an incredible honor to have won the innovator prize at Startup Yale,” said co-founder Georgia Faye Hirsty ’22. “It felt like a powerful culmination of all the work we’ve done within the Yale entrepreneurial community and a testament to the support, encouragement, and brilliance of our mentors. I’m excited to transition to work full-time on Frailty Myths post-graduation and will be focused on scaling our impact and continuing to advance justice through practice.”
- The Educator Wellness Project, winner of the Thorne Prize for Social Innovation in Health or Education, which awards $25,000 to the best venture seeking to address health or educational disparities among underserved populations.
The Educator Wellness Project provides individualized wellness coaching, small-group healing circles, and social-emotional learning resources to meet the mental health and wellness needs of teachers.
“We are so grateful to be the recipients of this year’s Thorne Prize. Our venture sits at the intersection of education and mental health, and the prize is focused on social innovation in health or education, so this felt like a perfect fit,” said founder Nicola Fleischer 22. “We got great feedback from the judges and are motivated to continue our growth in the coming year.”
- VivorCare, Audience Choice Winner for the Rita Wilson Prize Fund in Support of Innovation and Entrepreneurship, which awards up to $10,000 to the best student-led venture focused on creating a technological solution to address a health disparity impacting the nation.
VivorCare is the first virtual survivorship clinic providing targeted, whole-person care to survivors of critical illness, starting with cancer. Its founder is Hil Moss ’22
As an Audience Choice winner, VivorCare received $500.
- Sweetgum Labs, Audience Choice Award Winner for the Miller Prize, which awards $25,000 to a student-led venture working on innovative tech or tech-enabled solutions that have a definable go-to-market strategy.
Sweetgum Labs incentivizes users to follow a low-carbon lifestyle via a “gamified” mobile application.
“We are super grateful and excited to win this award, as it matters a lot to Sweetgum Labs as a Yale-based startup,” said co-founder Vera Wang ’22. “We look forward to continuing to leverage blockchain technology to help individuals in the community understand, record, visualize, and tokenize their carbon footprint. We welcome everyone to make an environmental and social impact with us!”
As an Audience Choice winner, Sweetgum Labs received $500.
- Pocketful, Audience Choice Award Winner for the Manolo Sanchez Prize, which awards $25,000 to a for-profit or non-profit student-led startup with the potential to help improve the financial health of the financially underserved.
Pocketful is a vernacular, community-driven, stock-trading and investing platform. It aims to democratize access to financial markets in India by making stock markets simple, safe, and available in regional languages. It’s targeted to first-time and beginner investors/traders ages 18 to 30.
As an Audience Choice winner, Pocketful received $500.
“We feel ecstatic to have been a finalist for the Monolo Sanchez Prize and to have won the Audience Choice Award,” said founder Sarvam Goel ’22. “It further validates our mission of taking investing to every household in India and helping people make better financial decisions. We’re excited about the launch of our pilot and look forward to impacting millions of Indians!”