Alumni and Donors

Scholl Launchpad Awards Support Student Innovation at Stevens

Through the Thomas H. Scholl Launchpad Awards, former Stevens trustee Thomas H. Scholl champions innovative student projects in education, healthcare, fashion and more.

Launchpad@Stevens has quickly grown from a weekend experiment in student entrepreneurship to a transformative force within the university. Launchpad, which began in 2017, supports students as they develop their ideas from rough prototypes into professional grade products while also developing business skills, learning the legal mechanics of starting new ventures, raising capital and building crucial relationships.

Since 2020, the Thomas H. Scholl Launchpad Awards have been a pivotal catalyst in developing the Launchpad concept, and in nurturing students’ ventures. “The Scholl Awards are not just a monetary gift,” Professor Mukund Iyengar, director of the Center for Entrepreneurship Education, points out. “They are the first check written toward the dreams and ambitions of young entrepreneurs who wish to solve important problems in the world.”

This year’s Scholl Awardees are well on their way to doing just that:


A notification system for those tracking blood sugar levels co-founded in June 2022 by Arianna Gehan, Class of 2024, and Frank Pinnola ’22. Daia won the Hudson County intercollege pitch competition to secure $10,000 in awards to bootstrap this company.


FitCheck allows users to log outfits and to organize wardrobes digitally. Creator Vasili Karalewich, Class of 2024, incorporated FitCheck after the app exceeded more than 60,000 downloads. Today, the app includes premium features and is used in more than 50 countries.

Diana Rosado poses for a picture to represent her work with Launchpad at Stevens


Diana Rosado, Class of 2024, helped develop a platform to create campus visits that are open 24/7 in the metaverse. Borne out of a personal frustration of limited college exposure for impoverished neighborhoods, Imagication is on a mission to flatten access to STEM opportunities.


Jules is a marketplace that allows selling un-played PC games, created by John DiGabriele, Joseph Guitian and Liam Rodgers, all Class of 2025.


Sebastian Dytrych, Class of 2025, and Chris Rodriguez, Class of 2024, have created a virtual building where job seekers progress through floors until they are hired at the rooftop. Dytrych and Rodriguez were contributors to SecureMeeting, a 2022 Scholl Award-winning video conference and chat tool.


From Gianangelo Dichio, Class of 2024, comes a startup that does automatic applications for actors on casting platforms like Backstage, Casting Networks and Actors Access.


SilverStrides is an app to help older adults meet their health goals. The app’s founder is Erin Kreis, a Class of 2024 mechanical engineering major.

Artisan 3D, founded by Anthony J. Mauceri, Class of 2024, and FileSorter, created by Brian Moon and Eric Bobinski, both Class of 2025, also received Scholl Awards.

The Scholl Launchpad Awards selection process is a community effort. Launchpad@Stevens participants who have incorporated companies are consulted, as are successful entrepreneurs who serve as judges at student pitch competitions. Awards are granted to teams that demonstrate a high commitment to their projects, and that are prepared for continued progress. How recipients use the funds varies based on the needs of each project. To date, Scholl Awards have helped teams pay for software, website hosting, marketing materials and supplies.

Students consult with Mukund as part of the Launchpad at Stevens program

Since it began, Launchpad@Stevens has produced more than 20 portfolio companies, creating value in excess of $100 million. Last year, the program saw six new companies incorporated, exceeding its average of three per year. Importantly, these enterprises are getting attention from some of the world’s most renowned investors.

Y-Combinator is backing Perl Street, a special purpose vehicle for financing hardware-driven company expansion co-founded by Dakota Wixom ’17 M.S. ’17 and Blitz, a no-code app building platform. Sam Schmitt ’23 recently joined Blitz as a full stack developer. Hayden Daly ’21 recently became the third employee of Sutro, a platform for building and sharing mobile apps that has received support from Sequoia Capital, the #1 venture capital firm in the world. And former Stevens student Bahij Nemeh bootstrapped Fulament, his high-performance 3D printing accessory provider, from $10,000 to $1.6 million in annual recurring revenue in just three years.

“While there are tangible results of Mr. Scholl’s gifts, it is the intangible qualities—resilience, creativity, and an entrepreneurial spirit— that our students will carry with them throughout their lives,” Iyengar notes. “The legacy of that gift is immeasurable.”

He adds, “As we stand on the precipice of an exciting new chapter, the initial success stories, fueled by the Scholl endowment, are becoming the bedrock of an ecosystem that promises to reshape our university's future and redefine the entrepreneurial landscape.”