By: Adrian Ayala-Perez ’26
At any startup, its team is a major catalyst that drives growth, innovation, and a clear vision. At The Garage, we understand the challenges student founders face in looking for teammates to propel their ideas into marketable products. Each quarter, we host a virtual Startup Matchmaking event to connect student founders from the Tinker and Residency Programs at The Garage with passionate Northwestern students eager to join our startup community. From technical support to marketing assistance, this event offers various opportunities that we encourage students from across Northwestern to explore—regardless of school or level of study.
On January 12th, 2023, 25+ student-founded startups took 60 seconds each to share about their company, their goals, and the kind of help they are looking for with over 116 interested students. These rapid-fire pitches are also recorded and re-posted to YouTube, which means students can still participate even if they missed the event! You can watch this quarter’s live stream below.
Check out the full list of startups that pitched here! Startups that pitched included:
- Borrough: Peer-to-peer rental marketplace to make sharing household items within large apartment and condo buildings frictionless (think air mattress, crockpot, stand mixer, bike, tent, etc.).
- FinFly: Our product is an easy-to-use financial planning tool that helps founders get a quick view of their cash flow burn, runway, and other key financial metrics so they can make better and more informed business decisions.
- PrOATein: Ready to go overnight oats that provide a nutrient-filled, satiating, high protein easy breakfast option for people on the go.
- Venture Health Studio LLC: Developing a magnetic wall outlet to prevent electrocutions and tripping hazards, while making the device easier to use for people with physical disabilities.
There was plenty of excitement over Zoom from intrigued students and student founders alike, as the event fostered numerous connections.
Kelvin Wong, Medill ’26, joined the event to see what teams piqued his curiosity. He noted that “[Startup] Matchmaking was a great resource for first years because a lot of these startups opened their arms as wide to many participants,” as the event emphasized promoting different skills and passions.
Kevin Kaspar, McCormick ’24 and co-founder of InfernoGuard, a wildfire detection and prevention startup, shared that “this year I had more teammates come to my Zoom room than I’ve ever had before, and that was really important because I’m hiring a lot of new roles as we look to scale our company going into the new year,” and was very excited about all the interest that was expressed throughout this experience.
Startup Matchmaking is a quarterly event. Students who pitch must be part of The Garage’s Residency or Tinker program, but all Northwestern students are encouraged to attend. If you missed this quarter’s event, our next Startup Matchmaking will be held during the spring quarter.
If you have an idea you’d like to work on, our Tinker program is open for sign ups during the entire academic year. Learn more about the Tinker program here.
Adrian Ayala-Perez ‘26 is a Social Policy & Data Science major from Miami, FL. He is a student aide at The Garage, tasked with managing different administrative, marketing, and operations projects. His favorite thing about The Garage is that students are encouraged to grow, fail, build grit, and expand their knowledge.