Archive for the ‘ Grant Recipients’ Category

ScriptoPro is our December Qualification Grant Recipient!

Wednesday, January 11th, 2017

Last week announced our December finalists and now we’re happy to finally introduce you to our December Qualification Grant winner, Meena Singhal, Founder of ScriptoPro.

Read our interview with Meena to learn more about how ScriptoPro is making the lives of teachers, students, and agencies much easier.

Meena Singhal
Meena Singhal

WN: For those who don’t know what ScriptoPro is, could you tell us a little bit about your business?
MS: ScriptoPro is an online assessment tool and learning management system that allows educators and trainers to develop and deliver quizzes, courses and training online, as well as track and report the progress of their learners through an engaging and intuitive interface. Instructors and trainers obtain their own individual account to use with their learners which means not having to solely depend on an institution’s prescribed system allowing for greater flexibility, customization, and creativity. It also means they can access their account anywhere, anytime.

With just a few simple steps, instructors and trainers can create courses and online quizzes in a variety of formats and publish them on the web. Customization options allow users to have immediate access to their quiz scores as well as explanations to responses. Results can be stored, collected, reviewed, exported, and printed after a test has been taken. User-friendly data reports also now include individual question comparison facilitating student learning outcomes assessment.

ScriptoPro also includes additional tools such as a survey maker, poll generator, flashcard maker, course calendar, course schedule, gradebook, class roster, and certificate generator. By taking away the complexities of development, server infrastructure, and the burden of setup costs, we allow educators and trainers to focus on what they do best – teach and train learners.

WN: How did you come up with the idea for ScriptoPro?
MS: I have been in the field of education for over twenty years as both an instructor and administrator. I realized that many instructors were not using the tools and systems that their schools provided because they were often too cumbersome to use. From an administrator perspective, I realized that all too often we depended on funding for tool enhancements and an IT staff who could keep up with teacher demands. When this was not possible, it meant outdated technology. Training on using tools was also a challenge because training sessions were often scheduled when instructors were teaching or there simply weren’t enough of them. In my conversations with part-time instructors I often sensed their frustrations when they had to re-learn new technology platforms at each institution they were teaching at and each time it meant recreating their materials.

Our children are growing up with technology and students and instructors are using it for just about everything so the idea was to come up with something that was easy to use, web-based so there was no setup involved, and something that is free for users and of minimal costs to instructors. No materials have to be recreated because one can access their learning management system from anywhere. Training is provided through free webinars and training materials are posted online for anytime access. We also wanted to create something that was fun to use and something that could be customized with one’s own themes, colors, photos, and templates.

WN: Can anybody use this service or do you have to be an educator/student?
MS: Initially the tool was created for educators and students but soon it became apparent that government agencies, businesses, healthcare organizations, and non-profits were using the tool. Several enhancements were made including a more comprehensive survey maker and training course builder so it could be used for employee training. ScriptoPro can be used for online quizzes in all subject areas, language tests, placement tests, academic assessments, e-learning, needs assessments, course evaluations, product training, professional development, web-based training onboarding, compliance tracking, and much more now. It is suitable for employees in all areas and learners in K-12 and higher education settings.

WN: Will students eventually be able to use this service to prepare for exams like the ACT and SAT?
MS: The tool can be used for all exam preps including the ACT and SAT. Practice questions and tests can be created and students can use the tool for practice. Currently we have several tutors using the tool with their students for this purpose. Students get meaningful and immediate feedback, and the reporting tools and question analysis reports give instructors and tutors an idea of the areas students might be having some challenges in.

WN: What’s the next step for ScriptoPro?
MS: While ScriptoPro is user-friendly, the focus now is to make the tool even more intuitive to use. We’ve added a search function for learners and modified the instructor dashboard with even more reporting tools. We minimized the number of steps it takes to set up an online class and create quizzes and surveys. We now have to modernize the appearance of the website to make sure we are up-to-date with the current look of streamlined modern websites. We will also update the training course builder module allowing for competency-based feedback for employees. Technology is forever evolving so in a sense the work is never done but it keeps getting better and better and the feedback that we receive from users helps us to continually enhance the assessment tools within ScriptoPro. I’m proud of what we’ve created so far. Being an entrepreneur is hard work but I’m fortunate to have a wonderful team including Walid Sabbagh, Star Hillman, and our programmers.

Learn more about Meena and ScriptoPro in her video here:


If you’d like to vote for Meena to win the $1,000 Amber Grant, you can vote for her here.

And thanks for reading! Remember that we award a grant every month – if interested, please apply today.

Mom Made Peeks Is Our November Qualification Grant Recipient!

Thursday, December 15th, 2016

A little bit ago we announced our November finalists and now we’re excited to finally announce that Emily Blomberg Founder of Mom Made Peeks is our November Qualification Grant winner!

Read on to learn more about Mom Made Peeks and Emily’s Caboosee onsie.

Emily Blomberg
Founder of Mom Made Peeks

WN: For those that don’t know anything about Mom Made Peeks, would you mind telling us a bit about your business?
EB: Mom Made Peeks is a brand made by a mom for moms ( or anyone that is taking care of children ). My onesie technology is the only onesie on the market that makes it possible to easily check your little one’s diaper without removing any clothing.This design is protected by a US utility patent. In 2017 Mom Made Peeks will be selling; onesies, fashion rompers and footie pjs all with the patented Caboosee back.

WN: What was the last straw that finally lead you design a onesie with a back that would allow you to peek into the diaper?
EB: My invention started on New Year’s Eve of 2011. My family and I were at a friend’s house for a New Year’s Eve party. This party was crawling with those little monsters we like to call our children. One little darling needed her diaper checked and I watched as her mom picked her up and did the common move we moms are great at “the sniff and leg peek” If the sniff doesn’t confirm your suspicion then the peek through the leg of the diaper is needed. As I watched this I voiced my frustration of how annoying onesies can be, because you can’t see into the diaper. This little cutie and her mom’s finger were in the clear (we moms know the leg peek can be a dangerous tactic). Admit it, we’ve all done it with it leaving us running to the sink to get the “suspicion” off our finger.

This whole experience led me to use my Christmas break designing a onesie that would allow easier access to peeking into the top of a diaper. And the Caboosee was born! One can peek into the diaper while the child is still fully dressed! No more removing shoes, pants or unsnapping the onesie.

WN: Do you do have any partners in this venture?
EB: Technically I am the sole owner, but I wouldn’t have gotten this far without the help of my family and friends! Being an entrepreneur has many ups and downs, sometimes more downs than up! But when things haven’t gone how I planned or another door was shut, I could also count on my close friends and family to give me an encouraging word to keep moving forward.

WN: Do you plan to sell your Caboosee onesies at any retail stores?
EB: I will start by selling E-commerence on my website but I do plan on contacting boutiques and certain retail stores about carrying my product.

WN: What’s the next step for Mom Made Peeks, LLC?
EB:I am currently working on finding the perfect USA manufacturer. I want to keep my product made in the USA if possible. I plan to launch my new line of Caboosee products in the Spring of 2017 at the ENK trade show.

WN: Any advice for other women entrepreneurs?
EB: Talk to as many people about your product as you can and listen to people’s feed back. Constructive criticism is needed with new products. Not everyone is going to love your product, but as an entrepreneur you need to have thick skin, because criticism helps you improve your product.

Learn more about Emily and Mom Made Peeks in her video here:


If you’d like to vote for Emily to win the $1,000 Amber Grant, you can vote for her here.

And thanks for reading! Remember that we award a grant every month – if interested, please apply today.

GloveStix is our October Grant Winner

Friday, November 11th, 2016

Last week we announced our October finalists and now we’re excited to finally announce that Krista Woods Founder of GloveStix is our October Qualification Grant winner!

Read on to learn more about GloveStix and how Krista’s company is tackling sports stink.

Krista Woods
Krista Woods
GloveStix CEO & Director of Stink Operations

WN:For those that aren’t familiar with your product can you explain what GloveStix are and how they work?
KW: Glovestix work to get the odor and moisture out of athletic gear. That horrendous odor you smell, that you didn’t ever think your cute kids (or yourself) could produce is actually odor causing bacteria. So all those chemical sprays and detergents that you have bought and sprayed until you can’t spray anymore don’t get the job done because they are not controlling bacteria growth, they are simply masking the smell. Glovestix will eliminate odor 3 ways, first, the antimicrobial plastic used in the Glovestix contains Silver Ions. In the presence of moisture silver ions are released from the plastic to extinguish the cell walls of the bacteria and inhibit 99.9% of odor causing bacteria growth in 24 hours, for a 10 year period. In addition, in the perforated tubes each Glovestix set has replaceable insert bags that will absorb moisture and deodorize to prevent future bacteria growth and help the gear smell better while drying it faster. There is no other product on the market like Glovestix. Glovestix are all natural and non-toxic allowing you to keep your nose happy, safely. They are easy to use and no work required, just put the stix in… and get the stink out!

WN:How quickly do GloveStix remove the stink? And how long do they last?
KW: The Glovestix will inhibit 99.9% of odor causing bacteria, on the product surface, in 24 hours for a 10 year period. No need to get new stix, use the same set for 10 years. The insert bags on the inside are the only things that need to be replaced and we recommend approximately every 3-4 months depending on how often the gear is used and how much moisture is present each time.

WN:Can you use GloveStix with any sports gear that stinks?
KW: YES!!Oh, there is so much stink! I had no idea how huge my market was until I started this when I suddenly became the recipient of everybody’s “stink story” 🙂 So although I originally invented them for athletic gloves like in lacrosse, hockey, boxing, football and soccer, they have quickly found there way into the hands of many other stinky athletes. They work in cleats, shoes, skates, dance shoes, elbow pads, knee pads, helmets, ugg boots, slippers, gear bags and more!

WN:What’s the next step for GloveStix?
KW: Growth, I’m focusing on moving units and increasing awareness of the product and I am currently working on getting into some major retailers. We are also designing our second product to really maximize all the intended uses. Since I’ve started this last year my focus has always been people…not product. By that I mean I had so much to learn about entrepreneurship since I had never done anything like this before and it was a huge gamble for me and my family. Glovestix is completely self-funded, we started with my oldest son’s college fund and we have since moved onto a 2nd home mortgage. So many people helped me get to where I am today, for that I am forever grateful, and I will continue to help others as I move forward. I have already stared a Young Entrepreneur program where I am working with selected teens and teaching them the ins and outs of small business. I will continue to speak and volunteer at many business and entrepreneurship classes as well as participate in the DECA programs at local High schools. My positive impact will be to inspire others to get out of their comfort zone and push themselves to the next level. As I grow, so will my connections and outreach.

WN:What piece of advice would you give other female entrepreneurs who are just starting out?
KW: My advice to other females is to be proud of yourself, no matter where you are in your life, your career, your motherhood, whatever it may be…be proud. Starting is hard, starting is scary, and the thought of failing is even worse but be proud that you want to try. You will experience tremendous highs and lows throughout the process and many times you may even want to throw in the towel. DONT. Keep going, keep moving forward, and just take the next step. That’s what it’s all about, taking one step forward, and one day at a time!! I am not going to tell you being an Entrepreneur is easy. Whether you are female or male, it’s a challenge. Ask questions, as many and as often as possible but trust yourself to make the ultimate decision that is best for you. Be ok with making a mistake because you will, if your doing it right. Move past it quickly and keep going forward because it’s not the idea, there are lots of those; it’s the willingness to jump in and do the work. Some days you will have to dig deep, much deeper then ever before to keep pushing yourself but I can promise you this, it’s worth it! I may be 43 but there is no greater feeling then when you achieve that first victory and you can scream and yell… “HEY MOM AND DAD… LOOK AT ME GO!!!!!” 🙂

Learn more about Krista in her video here:


And if you’d like to vote for Krista to win the $1,000 Amber Grant, you can vote for her here.

Thanks for reading! Remember that we award a grant every month – if interested, please apply today.

Kynplex is our September Qualification Grant Winner

Tuesday, October 11th, 2016

Last week we announced our September finalists and now we’re excited to finally announce that Grace Xiao Co-Founder of Kynplex is our September Qualification Grant winner!

Read on to learn more about Kynplex it’s bringing the science world together.

Grace Xiao
Co-Founder of Kynplex

WN: Please tell us about Kynplex in a nutshell and how you got started.
EW:The idea for Kynplex emerged when my co-founder Raul and I were trying to find research labs at Harvard that we wanted to join. We were shocked by how difficult it was because scientific information is scattered across thousands of publications and websites. We realized that we could tackle the challenge of inefficient scientific communication by creating a platform specifically designed for science. We started designing and building Kynplex, with the support of the Harvard Innovation Lab.

WN: Can anyone be a part of the online scientific community?
EW: The Kynplex network allows scientific companies and institutions to share updates on a single platform, so that anyone can discover the scientific advances happening in specific fields.

WN: Will you need a paid membership to access the Kynplex community or will it be free?
EW: Anyone can use Kynplex to discover what’s happening in fields like cancer or Alzheimer’s disease research. There will be subscriptions for company users to access additional features on Kynplex.

WN: What is the next step for Kynplex?
EW: We’re currently expanding the Kynplex network and developing more features that will help research ideas become impactful drugs and treatments. Stay tuned for some exciting features that will be open to the public soon!

WN: Any advice for other women entrepreneurs?
EW: There is no right answer in entrepreneurship so just believe in yourself and others will believe in you too.

Thanks for reading! Remember that we award a grant every month – if interested, please apply today.

And if you’d like to vote for Grace to win the $1,000 Amber Grant, you can vote for her here.

Haven Innovations is our August Qualification Grant Winner

Tuesday, September 20th, 2016

A little while ago we announced our August finalists and now we’re excited to finally announce that Emily Wills Founder and CEO of Haven Innovations LLC is our August Qualification Grant winners!

Read on to learn more about Haven Innovations and how they plan to make the world a safer place.

Emily Wills
Founder and CEO
Haven Innovations, LLC

WN: For those who’ve never heard of Haven Innovations would you mind telling them a bit about your business?
EW:Haven’s overall mission is to protect the lives of young women without disrupting their daily lives. We carry out this mission by incorporating three core ideals into our company: commitment to safety, continuing to foster growth in knowledge and creativity, and humbly serving others. These values show others that we are truly passionate about building a device that will keep young women safe and our company is unlike any other through our dedication.

Being that our target market is young women, just like most of us on the Haven team, it allows us to fully understand our market’s needs in terms of personal safety. Haven is much more than a bracelet; it is an innovative approach to solving one of the most pressing issues in this day and age–missing and exploited young women and children.

WN: How did you and your partner come up with this idea? 
EW:I first thought of the concept of Haven in September of 2014 after hearing the news of University of Virginia student, Hannah Graham’s, abduction. I then learned that this case ironically involved the same man that had taken the life of a fellow Hokie, Morgan Harrington, just five years earlier. Both of these girls had cell phones with them when they were taken and their phones were the first thing the kidnapper took from them, eliminating any hope of getting help from the outside world. Ultimately, this lack of communication ended up costing them their lives. My co-founder, Ashlyn, and I have a deep passion to protect and hopefully save the lives of women in these dangerous situations.

WN: How long does it take to alert authorities in event of an emergency?
EW:A Haven device prides itself on its ability to alert responders immediately once it is activated with its GPS and audio technologies so that they can have an accurate depiction of the nature of the emergency. The first 24-48 hours is the most crucial time period to try to locate and rescue someone. Haven intends to lessen the amount of time it takes for emergency contacts and personnel to find a person, making their chances of survival more likely. Since Haven works separately from a cell phone, it gives a woman a better chance of getting the help she needs because the first thing taken from you in an abduction is a phone.

WN: Do you plan to sell all types of jewelry such as necklaces, bracelets, and watches?
EW: While our initial product is a bracelet, we have committed to adapt to technology as it gets smaller and smaller. This will help it stay inconspicuous to predators yet fashionable for a woman to want to wear it all the time. We do plan to expand to other pieces of jewelry to fit into the style of each woman. We also plan to expand into devices for men.

WN: Have you thought about marketing this product directly to colleges?
EW:Our initial target market is women between the ages of 17 and 24, so, essentially, we are reaching out to the college aged women that we all go to school with. A unique part about our product is that we also target towards the parents of these women. Parents should view a device like Haven as a form of insurance—if you don’t need it, then at least you have it, and if you do need it, then it could save your life if it came down to it. These will be our initial customers since we have direct connection with them on campuses.

WN: What’s the next step for Haven Innovations? 
EW: The next step for our company is to begin developing and testing our first prototype with the funds we have raised through crowdfunding. The Haven team hopes to start manufacturing and selling to our first customers by the summer of 2017 so look out for us!

Thanks for reading! Remember that we award a grant every month – if interested, please apply today.

And if you’d like to vote for Emily to win the $1,000 Amber Grant, you can vote for her here.

NAJMTEK is our July Qualification Grant Recipient!

Monday, August 15th, 2016

About 2 weeks ago we announced our July finalists and now we’re excited to declare Sophie Ennadi, CEO and Co-Founder of NAJMTEK is our July Qualification Grant winner!

Read on to learn more about NAJMTEK and how this tech company is improving the lives of those with dyslexia.

najmtek logo
Sophie Ennadi

WN: For those who haven’t heard of NAJMTEK, could you tell us a little bit about your business and how you got started?
SE: At Najmtek, we are currently working on an awesome adaptive and innovative learning tool for people with dyslexia – adults and kids – to help them learn, read, work and communicate with others without having dyslexia in the way. The name of the device is called the Ubook. This is a dual screen laptop that features language tools, specific fonts, and apps to assist those with this learning disability. While the Ubook’s incredible features go far beyond this, my personal experience having a daughter with dyslexia is what prompted me to pursue this rewarding project.

My youngest daughter was diagnosed with dyslexia when she was in first grade. She was 6 years old! The day the news broke, it was like the sky was falling on my head. Why me? Why my sweet heart?

I had no idea at the time what exactly having dyslexia meant. My other kids were very smart- they were homeschooled during a few years because they were quick learners and had moved beyond their age in school. As of most people, I was stupidly thinking that the word dyslexic means incapable but I later learned that this is in no way true. I had the chance to meet with a wonderful speech therapist that explained to me what dyslexia is and how smart those who have it actually are. The speech therapist has created a methodology that helped save my daughter and other kids too. Believe me or not, but, my sweet-heart was able to read like the average of the class only a few months after meeting this therapist for the first time!

Her journey fascinated and motivated me so much that we decided to take the project we were already working on, a universal laptop with an input touch screen, to help dyslexic kids and adults. We wanted to make people aware that dyslexia is a real and incredible gift, not a blemish. Being dyslexic is like being left-handed – you are different – this is obvious, but if you are taught how to use your right hand, you will become ambidextrous and will look like a genius to others. And this works exactly the same way with dyslexia: if we taught you how to use your brain, you will uncover your abilities. Many dyslexics are famous because that have made tremendous contributions to mankind. Bill Gates, Charles Schwab, Whoopi Goldberg, Steven Spielberg, Einstein, Picasso, Agatha Christie are some of them.

Isn’t that an evidence of the wonderful power of dyslexia?

I saw this moment in my life as an opportunity to use the Ubook’s capabilities to improve learning for those with dyslexia. I have a strong background in engineering alongside 12 years of experience in product development. Many studies have shown that electronic devices are very helpful for those with dyslexia, so we decided to come up with our own at Najmtek. The Ubook offers a technological solution by providing the first ever neurological “sign alphabet” as well as assistive apps to train/rewire the brain, especially designed for people having dyslexia to help them learn, read, work, and communicate with others without having dyslexia in the way. This feature that we added to the Ubook is the result of 20 years of research and work with dyslexics, and has been tested for its effectiveness.

We believe that the Ubook has potential to bring very positive change to not only users looking for a device that combines many functions into one, but those who have to learn in an adaptive way. The Ubook will be THE solution to help dyslexic kids at school learn, read, and write without having to go out of their way to seek outside accommodations.

For 1 out of 5 kids, traditional school is more harmful than nurturing due to dyslexia and learning disabilities. With our learning tool, they will be able to make mistakes, erase them, and redo anything without the pressure of having to seek individualized attention as well as adapt their learning styles among learners in the classroom without the disability.


WN: Can you explain how your Ubook laptop works?
SE:Ubook is a multitouch laptop. It works like a conventional laptop. The only difference is there is no more physical keyboard, but a multi-touch input screen called “screenboard”, able to display any interface you want to have from a multi-language keyboard, to a graphic tablet, through a medical interface, by a single tap on the screen.

Due to this conception, Ubook is a powerfully dynamic hardware and software tool that delivers a more advanced set of functionalities and experiences than any other laptop in the market.

The one-touch customizable keyboard enables dyslexics to see, read and comprehend in a way that is most effective for them and according to how they perceive symbols, shapes and content, while outputting the same font as everyone else.

WN: Has your daughter used or tested the Ubook?
SE:Of course my daughter already used it, and already tested the apps. She loves the Ubook, she is looking forward to have it at school. And you know, the more she is using it, the more she is thinking about new features she would love to have, and that would be such useful for kids with dyslexia, but also kids in general!

“Happy kids when testing the Ubook”
Saturday August 13th, 2016, Houston TX

WN: Do you plan to sell your Ubook to schools? And are scholarships/laptops available to children in need.
SE: We’ve planned to sell Ubook directly to people having dyslexia and their family, but also to work with school districts in order to bring Ubook at school, in the framework of “one device per child”. Ubook will be thus available during the school year for every child. No more visible difference between kids having dyslexia and the others. They will work on the same laptop, except that they will not use the same font! As stated before, kids with dyslexia will input in a font that is more convenient for them, the “universal” one, and output in a font readable by everyone, while other kids will just use the standard font!

We’ve also planned to giveaway between 5% and 10% of our production to children in need. Working with school districts will help us identify those kids. So they will have a chance to realize their genius!

If you are working in school district special education, feel free to contact us, and let’s see what we can do together to help those kids!

WN: What piece of advice would you give other female entrepreneurs who are just starting out?
SE:BE YOU! Believe in yourself! Follow your dreams! Nothing is impossible in life!

You just have to take the right action, and move forward, one step at a time. The journey may be long and hard, but never give up. This is your passion, this is what drives you, and motivates you every single day! You are wonderful, smart, amazing. You will find the right path to do it and succeed!

Best of Luck Ladies. One day you will be in my shoes, honored and grateful for this opportunity to be selected for the Qualification Grant.

Watch the video Below to learn more about Sophie:


To vote for Sophie to win the $1,000 Amber Grant, you can vote for her here.

Thanks for reading! Remember that we award a grant every month – if interested, please apply today.