The Garage’s pre-accelerator program, Jumpstart, hosted Demo Day in person and virtually this year – welcoming guests, viewers and a panel of judges to watch 9 student-founded teams pitch their startups and compete for $10,000 of non-dilutive prize money! In case you missed it, you can watch the event below:
Our Jumpstart teams returned to The Garage this summer, participating entirely in-person for the first time in two years! The Garage hosted multiple workshops, events, speakers, and mentoring sessions over the 10-week program, leaving a lasting impact on the 25 students that spent the summer working on their startups. We’d like to extend a special thanks to our content providers – comprised of Northwestern alumni, industry experts, and startup founders – who shared their valuable expertise with the students during numerous program events.
On August 24th, our Jumpstart teams kicked the morning off by pitching to a panel of judges, featuring Yasmeena Faycurry, an alumni of The Garage, Analyst at Chicago Ventures, and Founder of Unfound, Chris Wu, Vice President at Impact Engine, and Landon Campbell, General Manager at Drive Capital. Next up – the main event!
The teams geared up to share their pitches for the audience showcase that evening, displaying the milestones they hit this summer and beyond. Learn more about the 9 teams and their startups:
BearRoom – We elevate the traditional tabletop experience by creating a space for people to play their favorite board games by transforming their phone into a controller and a tablet, laptop, or TV into the board.
JupiterDX – Building a platform for patients with chronic illnesses to share data with loved ones, care providers, and researchers.
The Late Knight – Delicious, cheap, late-night food delivery service for college towns – starting with Northwestern!
Overture Games – Developing video games for music students that they play with their instrument.
Renota – Building software to help math students receive more high-quality feedback on their work while saving teachers time in the process.
Squair One– Increasing equity in higher education through one on one mentoring sessions by and for lower income students.
SteadyScrib – Designing a pen to increase ability and independence for people with Parkinson’s Disease, specifically counteracting the most writing-inhibitive Parkinson’s symptoms.
Wudv – Second-hand fashion marketplace of blank price tags.
Yitzy – Platform that helps young adults connect better through social journaling.
With much anticipation, the audience then cast their votes for their favorite pitch and the results were announced!
Taking home the Audience Favorite Prize was SteadyScrib. Co-founders Alexis Chan and Izzy Mokotoff were ecstatic to have made such an impression on the crowd.
In third place, Overture Games took home a check for $2,000. Of the team’s Jumpstart experience, Steven Jiang said, “Jumpstart is incredible. I think it really made us confident that we could do this full-time after college, which was one of our goals. The mentorship, the faculty and staff support was incredible – and without Jumpstart, we couldn’t finish our game!”
In second place, Renota took home a check for $3,000. Jake Erichson shared, “We’re honored – there were nine incredible teams and it was amazing to get some recognition after a summer of a lot of hard work. It was awesome to be up there pitching with everybody and we’re excited to have a bit more funding to do more and try to help more students.”
The winning team, SteadyScrib, cashed an additional $4,000 check. “I’m so grateful to my wonderful team and especially grateful for a community like The Garage for hosting the Jumpstart program. I think the reason why we’ve been able to see such great progress this summer is because we’ve had such incredible support along the way,” said Izzy Mokotoff. Alexis Chan also shared that “it has really been an incredible summer and winning a prize is just the cherry on top for all of our hard work.”
Congratulations to all of our teams for putting on an amazing showcase! We can’t wait to see what’s in store this upcoming year.