A Real World Education – Shaan Franchi and Stuart Wang Discuss Vispio

Have you ever felt a disconnect between what you were learning in school and the “real world”? Students rejoice; teachers have felt it, too. The downside, however, is that most teachers don’t know how to fix it. Teachers, especially at the middle school and high school level, are consistently evaluated on how well their students perform on tests designed for a set curriculum. In other words, teachers don’t have much incentive to distract their students from that set curriculum by spending class time each week discussing news and other world events.

While educators have struggled with this problem, a group of students from Cornell has found the solution: Vispio.

Weaving the Future: Shaibyaa Rajbhandari ’18 with Patuka

Cornell student Shaibyaa Rajbhandari ‘18 started her entrepreneurial journey last year with Utthan. Utthan is a multidimensional social investment company that creates long-term sustainable impact in Nepal following the earthquake in 2015. The entire world came together to help in immediate rehabilitation but often that is short-term. With Utthan, Shaibyaa aims to create a healthier and economically stable alternative for families affected by the earthquake.

E@D met with Shaibyaa last year to talk about Utthan, and we catch up with her again to talk about the second installation of her journey: Patuka.

Seeing the Future of Data: Jim Li ’17 and TravelSee

According to a recent Gartner survey, 75% of companies are investing heavily into their data departments in the coming years. Proper data analysis provides key insights into customer behavior, marketing strategies, product development and more, thereby making data analysis a crucial element for any business. The bottom line? Embrace data, or get left behind.

Cornell psychology and economics student Jim Li ’17 wants to arrive at the forefront of this trend. Jim is the chief operating officer of TravelSee: a data venture looking to help cultural institutions, such as museums, rekindle their connections with their audiences. TravelSee collects and analyzes data from many sources, and transforms them into comprehensive action plans for institutions to implement.

Lucas Millman (’18) and Happiness Abscissa

Next time you want to splurge on some new perfume or soap, head to the Cornell Store for a truly Cornell brand. Environmental Economics major Lucas Millman (‘18) and two Weill Medical professors – Dr. Beeder and Dr. Oribe – are pioneering a non-gendered fragrance company dedicated to mental well-being. When you use their products, you will be transported to peaceful fields of fruit trees.

Startup Stories

Last Wednesday, Entrepreneurship@Dyson held Startup Stories: a panel of distinguished student entrepreneurs! Each student gave valuable insight into their companies from how they got started to where they will be going next!

Siddhant Sachdev (‘17) Brews Success

Siddhant Sachdev (A&S ‘17) claims to “not be a coffee person,” but if he had to have a cup, he’d opt for a caramel frappuccino. Although you won’t find him drinking a standard cup of coffee, he’s brewing something more powerful: knowledge.

Ezra Box: Cornell’s Storage Solution with Karnavat (’17) and Tayal (’16)

For many people, summer is a time for friends, sun, and relaxation. That is, unless you need to find a place to store your stuff. In short, many college students who live far away from their university campuses struggle to find local storage facilities to house their belongings over long breaks and avoid the hassle of bringing them back home. Similarly, even when students are successful in finding a place to store their clothing, these facilities charge high storage fees that can put a damper on anyone’s summer fun.

Fortunately, Cornell students won’t face this problem for much longer. A team of Cornell students recently founded Ezra Box: a peer to peer platform that helps students who need storage space find other Cornell students with more than enough space to spare. The platform currently operates as a website, and matches Cornell student renters with hosts to find the ideal storage solution.

Sweet Cardamom with Michele Pothen (’18)

Starting in 2014, Michele Pothen (’18) and her sister Meril created a sweet entrepreneurial venture: Sweet Cardamom! The dessert company features hand-crafted designs on their signature sugar cookies. The girls have dealt with both successes like completing a 400 cookie count order and challenges such as prioritizing school and work over baking. In this interview, Michele discusses more about her family business from the meaning behind its name to what’s it like working with her sister!

Grooming Therapy with Darron Irving (’17)

For decades, Blacks and Latinos in the United States have had to manage with a remarkably lackluster selection of cosmetic accessories and hair products, an issue recently brought to mainstream attention through avenues such as the documentary Good Hair by comedian Chris Rock. This dilemma has extended to Cornell’s campus, whereby students have commonly cited difficulties finding suitable – and physically present – solutions for their specific hair needs.

Raising a Village with Shaibyaa Rajbhandari (’18)

Like any good entrepreneur, Cornell student Shaibyaa Rajbhandari (’18) hears the word “problem” and immediately thinks, “opportunity.” Shaibyaa is the proud founder of Utthan: a multidimensional investment company designed to create long-term recovery following the destruction of the earthquake in Nepal. Utthan, which means “uplifting” in Nepali, has since received an award from Entrepreneurship at Cornell to continue its efforts to support income for people in Nepal by donating goats following the earthquake.

Catherine Wei (’19) and the Boston Marathon Snack Shack

This spring, Entrepreneurship@Dyson welcomes a few new writers. Say hello to Catherine Wei! As a freshman, Catherine is interested in pursuing entrepreneurship and marketing concentrations within the Applied Economics and Management major. She is excited to share her passion for entrepreneurship and connect with students and alumni for Entrepreneurship@Dyson. Today, Catherine will be sharing her first business experience: the Boston Marathon Snack Shack!

Love in Every Stitch with Sakib Jamal (’19)

Sakib maintains his own blog dedicated to covering entrepreneurship, and recently tried his hand at starting his own social enterprise called Chitro Social. Chitro provides an online platform for women in rural Bangladesh with low-incomes to design and sell hand-made products to earn a living wage. While Chitro has had its successes, Sakib’s experience has endowed him with a remarkably mature view of entrepreneurship, and he recognizes that he has also encountered many challenges in his work. As an active Cornell student, Sakib struggles to juggle his responsibilities to school and his business, forcing him to step back and consider giving away the rights to his company in a potential merger deal. Like any good parent, Sakib realizes that it may be time to let go.

Mark Your Calendars: Calmeet Launched by Aditya Rahalkar (’14)

Meetings. They’re a nuisance before you even show up. Why? Following an endless stream of emails, text messages, and Doodle Polls, you’ve spent so much time figuring out when to meet, you’ve forgotten what you were supposed to talk about. Having lost so much time, you start to think, “Somebody needs to hold a meeting to discuss how to plan meetings.”

Better put that conversation on hold, as there’s finally a better way. Introducing Calmeet: a revolutionary app that helps you and the people you care about find the ideal time to get together.

Julian Moraes (’18) and the Hyperloop

In 2013, SpaceX and Tesla CEO Elon Musk announced his wildest idea yet: the Hyperloop. Musk envisioned the Hyperloop as a fifth transportation system that could get you from Cornell’s campus to see your favorite artist at Madison Square Garden in under thirty minutes. While for many of us, this seems like technology fit for science fiction novels, it’s becoming increasingly real for one group of Cornell students.

MacroFuel Part II: Running a Successful Kickstarter

MacroFuel was founded at Cornell in 2015 during the Spring semester. The company has designed a healthy meal supplement for busy people looking for a quick and nutritionally complete food alternative. For more details on their founding and what it is like to start a company at Cornell, see part one of the MacroFuel story.…