Categories
Office of Engaged Learning Office of Engaged Learning - Entrepreneurship

Big iDeas and Incubator@SMU Entrepreneurship Report 2021-22

Read the latest report on Entrepreneurship Programs from the Office of Engaged Learning. Click the images to view larger versions.

Categories
Office of Engaged Learning Office of Engaged Learning - Entrepreneurship

Big iDeas and Incubator@SMU Entrepreneurship Report 2021-2022

Categories
Office of Engaged Learning Office of Engaged Learning - Entrepreneurship

The Incubator is a client of Boulevard Consulting!

The Incubator@SMU is excited to announce that we are a client of SMU’s Boulevard Consulting! Kim Commerato (faculty of CCPA in Meadows) will lead her students through an experiential, capstone-level, real-life exercise to help the Incubator deliver an exciting—and effective—public relations, media relations and branding plan. The Incubator currently has over 50 companies led by undergraduate and graduate students, alumni, faculty and staff. Who knows about the amazing work achieved by our companies and the potential of the Incubator itself? Not as many as we hope to reach. We are looking forward to changing this through the plan and support that this amazing opportunity will achieve. Professor Commerato and the students of Fall 2021 cohort of Boulevard Consulting—thank you for this amazing opportunity!

Categories
Office of Engaged Learning Office of Engaged Learning - Entrepreneurship

Building the Future of Disease Prevention Technology

[Dallas, Texas July 2021] Irewole (Wole) Akande is an Engineer and Entrepreneur. Currently a full time MBA candidate at Southern Methodist University (SMU), Irewole Akande, is leveraging innovative technology to save lives and reduce the spread of infectious diseases around the world through his healthcare technology startup – City Health Tech. Co-founded by Akande and Northwestern University alumnus, Ibraheem Alinur, in 2017, City Health Tech has developed cutting-edge wireless handwashing technology to guide users through effective handwashing techniques, improve hygienic behaviors, and use data collected to prevent the spread of diseases in the community.

In early 2021, Akande had an unfortunate bout with COVID-19. It occurred when so many good things were happening. City Health Tech had just got their first investor, and the company was to launch their product development of their first product Opal™. Unfortunately, COVID set product development back by over three months.

In Akande’s words: “After the initial disease passed, I was hit with a second round of long-haul symptoms that have severely affected my heart with little to no medical explanations on what is going on or if I’d ever be able to run again. As a result, I have developed severe health anxiety. This feeling is especially crippling because I had never fallen ill before COVID.”

As soon as Akande got good enough, he threw myself right back into working on City Health Tech Inc. with a very different mindset. One of a survivor with a burning desire to prevent others from experiencing what he and millions around the world did. “Prevention is better than cure,” has a whole new meaning to him. And protecting his community is a vision that now defines him.

He insists: “The future of healthcare is prevention. The future of healthcare is public health. The future of healthcare is technology. Do not let anyone tell you otherwise. And whatever winding path I take, I will keep me building the future of disease prevention technology.” And he is committed to his goal as in less than a month, City Health Tech will be releasing their first batch of products to strategic partners in the food handling, life sciences, and education spaces.

Akande, is a recipient of the Lucy Billingsley Future Texas Business Legend Award from the prestigious Texas Business Hall of Fame (TBHF). The award is presented to the best and brightest business student entrepreneurs in Texas that exhibit entrepreneurial aspirations and a propensity for leadership and innovation.

City Health Tech is promoting health literacy and more hygienic habits while collecting informative data through its proprietary and revolutionary IoT health communication device, Opal. Opal is a digital assistant that allows schools and organizations to analyze, track, and encourage healthy hand hygiene practices in their community through a variety of health communication/programming. By installing Opal in schools, office buildings, hotels, restaurants, life science buildings, and food manufacturing facilities, customers can encourage healthier habits within their space and collect key hygiene data that can be leveraged to better prevent the spread of infectious diseases.

The company which recently relocated to North Texas is looking to deepen its connections within the state of Texas. The founders were selected as one of only 7% of applicants into Newchip’s (based out of Austin, TX) competitive seed accelerator program. They hope to develop the company and expand their fundraising capabilities with expert mentors as they raise their seed round from angel investors or venture capitalists.

Akande credits the Southern Methodist University for providing him a unique space to grow and scale City Health Tech. Being in Texas has allowed him to tap into the unique resources and opportunities provided by the state. The company is looking for partners and investors within the North Texas area as they look to grow and scale their company.

Contact: Irewole Akande | City Health Tech

Phone: 3125326660

Email: irewole@cityhealthtech.com | partner@cityhealthtech.com

Categories
Office of Engaged Learning Office of Engaged Learning - Entrepreneurship

Make Sister Shaq’s Sweet Tea a Habit

Raleigh DewanRaleigh Dewan is a junior at SMU double majoring in Creative Writing and Marketing with a concentration in Entrepreneurship and minors in Italian, History, and Public Policy and International Affairs. At SMU, Raleigh is a Hunt Leadership Scholar, BBA Scholar, Hilltop Scholar, Pre-Law Scholar, Hegi Career Leader, and a member of the University Honors Program. On the hilltop, Raleigh serves as the Internal Development Chair of Program Council, a member of the Campus Services Student Advisory Board, and is President of the Engaged Learning Student Board.

Raleigh is the founder of Sister Shaq Sweet Tea—a sweet tea company that uses confession worthy, American-grown tea to expand local awareness of human trafficking and empower its victims to regain their independence. He believes the knowledge and experience from participating in the Tower Scholars Program will allow him to better comprehend and advocate for the most effective public policy aimed at fighting human trafficking.

For more about Sister Shaq’s, visit Sister Shaq’s Website

Categories
Office of Engaged Learning Office of Engaged Learning - Entrepreneurship

AnteDia Folkways and Humanities Preservation Society

Pamela BaileyPamela Bailey, who works in the Center on Research and Evaluation in Simmons, recently formed a non-profit, AnteDia Folkways and Humanities Preservation Society!

Bailey is a nationally published author, a singer-songwriter, podcaster, filmmaker, and a self-described “Carolina Daughter” living in Dallas, Texas.  She is descended from enslaved people from the Pee Dee region of South Carolina. Her projects afford her opportunities to collaborate with scholars in the US and internationally on the subject of forced migration of American-born enslaved people and the lasting effects of forced family separations on their descendants.

For more about Pamela, visit BigFamilySearch.com

Categories
Office of Engaged Learning Office of Engaged Learning - Entrepreneurship

Rodman Steele is turning it up to 11

Rodman Steele (BA Music ’18) is rapidly growing his music studio based in the Incubator@SMU. With a growing roster of teachers, the Rodman Steele Studio is hosting live events and offering home and studio lessons for guitar, bass, vocals, production, drums, and musical theatre. Turn it up to 11!

Categories
Office of Engaged Learning Office of Engaged Learning - Entrepreneurship

Plutus 21 Founder featured on Blockchain & Crypto panel

Hamiz Mushtaq Awan, founder and partner, Plutus21 Capital, recently spoke on NTX Inno panel about Blockchain and cryptocurrency. Watch the panel below:

For more, visit: NTXInno.com

Panel

– Natalie Smolenski, Head of Business Development, Hyland Credentials and Executive Board Member, Texas Blockchain Council
– Mance Harmon, co-founder and CEO, Hedera Hashgraph
– Hamiz Mushtaq Awan, founder and partner, Plutus21 Capital
– Moderator: Kevin Cummings, Staff Reporter, NTX Inno

Categories
Office of Engaged Learning Office of Engaged Learning - Entrepreneurship

Congratulations Big iDeas Business Plan winners!

The 2021 Big iDeas Business Plan Competition was held on February 26th. Congratulations to the following winners:

ANIM

Founder, Manov Janim ’22

College+

Founder, Sean Suberu ’22

Curlē

Founder, Mona El-Gharby ’21

EZ Tutor

Founder, Aryan Bhatnager ’22

Panacea

Madison McMahan ’22

spotBOX

Founder, Sonia Saeed ’23

Sister Shaq’s Sweet Tea

Founder, Raleigh Dewan ’23

Categories
Office of Engaged Learning Office of Engaged Learning - Entrepreneurship

GreenerLife LLC: greener life, greener earth

By Haley Zadel, ’20, with Adam Neal

Have you ever wanted to become more environmentally friendly, but you just don’t know how? GreenerLife LLC, founded by Taylor Slaton ’20 (CEO/CTO) and Seher Iqbal ’21 (CFO), is a forthcoming app that helps people track and change their waste habits.

The app will have three main components: Trash CreationTrash Created, and Trash Percentages.

  • The Trash Creation graph allows users to view their trash creation from the current and previous weeks.
  • In the Trash Created section, users input the trash they have used throughout the day. For each piece of garbage, the user can enter its category, type, and quantity.
  • The Trash Percentages section is a pie chart divided by category. Users can see a list of their worst habits and click on each one to learn about possible solutions.

Taylor Slaton graduated in Spring ’20 with a degree in Computer Science and a minor in Mathematics. She is now working at Protiviti and pursuing her MS in Cyber Security at the Lyle School of Engineering. Seher Iqbal is a senior double-majoring in Psychology and Economics.

When Slaton first decided to become waste-free, she decided to do a “trash audit.” Usually this process involves making a spreadsheet or taking notes about your daily waste production. Wanting to make this process easier and more accessible to people, she founded GreenerLife.

GreenerLife won initial funding through SMU’s Big iDeas contest in 2019 and the BigiDeas Business Pitch Competition and Demo Day in 2020. “Winning the Big iDeas competition helped connect us with more people who we can talk to and validate that our idea is a good one. When we won, we realized that we could actually have a big impact. Big iDeas has also helped because now we have funding, which has given us the ability to get the resources we need,” explains Slaton.Slaton adds, “we want GreenerLife to have a positive connotation. Instead of ‘here’s what you’re doing wrong,’ we want to help you see the difference you can make.”With the app currently under development, Slaton and Iqbal have focused on using social media to raise awareness about sustainability in different industries. “Right now, sustainability can’t be the main focus,” says Iqbal. “People have had to go back to single-use items. That’s no reason to feel bad; there are still ways to be sustainable, like making reusable masks or composting.”