UPenn Education Design Studio Picks Five Startups

column | Incubators

UPenn Education Design Studio Picks Five Startups

Philly takes a crack at incubating edtech startups

By Betsy Corcoran (Columnist)     Sep 23, 2013

UPenn Education Design Studio Picks Five Startups

Five startups are part of the inaugural group of edtech companies that have won a spot in the newly launched Education Design Studio, Inc. (EDSi) at the University of Pennsylvania’s Graduate School of Education. They are:

Autism Expressed, Raise Labs and scrible were all finalists at the Milken-Penn GSE business plan competition held in May. (See piece here.) All the Design Studio participants agree to spend six months in the program. They will receive $10,000 for participating (and any additional prize money that they win. For instance, Raise Labs snapped up $75K at the May competition.)

The university program is a $2.1 million "hybrid incubator-and-seed-fund." It will nurture startups, aiming to increase the success rate for start-up and early stage ventures by connecting the startups with research; giving them opportunities to try out their products in Philadelphia classrooms and local companies; and connecting the entrepreneurs to relevant research at the university.

Investors in the program include Ben Franklin Technology Partners of Southeastern Pennsylvania; McGraw-Hill; Ron Packard of K12 Inc.; Drs. Steve and Jessica Melman from Dermazoo; John H. Cammack, Managing Partner of Cammack Associates; John Katzman, CEO of The Noodle Companies LLC; the Brigitte and Donald Manekin Family Fund; Gregory Milken; Richard Binswanger, President/CEO of Away To Donate; Dr. Wallace Boston, CEO of American Public Education, Inc.; and Eric Aroesty.

The effort is the brainchild of Dr. Barbara ("Bobbi") Kurshan, a long-time education technology investor and executive, and formerly the executive director of nonprofit Curriki. (Editor's note: Kurshan also advises EdSurge.)

The cohort officially begins on Sept. 23.

Learn more about EdSurge operations, ethics and policies here. Learn more about EdSurge supporters here.

More from EdSurge

Get our email newsletterSign me up
Keep up to date with our email newsletterSign me up