Boston Startup Weekend EDU

    Friday, November 21 - 23, 2014

  1. Overview
  2. Schedule
  3. Judges
  4. Coaches and Mentors
  5. Sponsors
  6. Organizing Team
  7. Blog
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Boston Startup Weekend EDU

Friday, November 21 - 23, 2014

Friday, November 21 - 23, 2014
Event starts at 5:30 pm

General Assembly
WeWork Fort Point
51 Melcher Street
Boston, MA 02210

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Have you ever had an idea for improving education?

Here’s your opportunity to transform your education ideas into action in 54 hours. Find the right people with complementary skills & the passion to build an education product in one weekend. Design for learning, conduct user tests, receive coaching from experienced education designers & industry professionals and win prizes that will help take your idea to the next level!

Friday night: 60-second pitches that result in the formation of small teams around the best, most viable education concepts. Educators validate ideas, then all attendees vote. We hope you’ll pitch, but definitely not required! 

Saturday morning: Workshops!  We'll have mini-bootcamps led by local experts on such topics as lean start-up methodologies, building effective launch pages, and more -- all lessons you will be able to leverage over the weekend.

Saturday and Sunday: Work days! Teams focus on user research, customer development, validating their ideas and building prototypes with the help of experienced coaches from the education and entrepreneurial world. You’re welcome to stay and work as long as the venue will allow!

Sunday evening: Teams demo their education products and receive valuable feedback from a panel of expert judges. Winning teams take home a grab bag of great prizes to help launch their company, and may be eligible to advance & compete in Startup Weekend's Global Startup Battle!

Here are some of the things you get from attending:
  • Delicious & healthy breakfast, lunch and dinner for the whole weekend
  • A free .co domain name
  • $2,000 of credit on Google App Engine
  • $100 of AWS credit for hosting
  • Awesome coaching by education & tech industry leaders
  • A network of 100+ new educator, developer, designer & entrepreneur friends who are also excited about improving education
We hope you will join us!

For more information about Startup Weekend Education events, check out the Startup Education website.

Watch our Demo Night LIVE at beginning at 5pm ET.


Friday November 21st

5:30 pm
Arrive at the venue, get checked in, grab some dinner, and meet people!

7:00 pm
Welcome & Speakers
Review agenda for the weekend and introduce speakers, coaches, and community leaders

7:30 pm
Pitches Start
Optionally line up to give your pitch

9:00 pm
Attendees vote for the top pitches

9:15 pm
Form Teams
Teams start forming and discussing ideas

10:00 pm
Begin Work
Start to formalize teams and take an inventory of skills. Be honest, and direct about what resources and skills are needed for the weekend. You may stay and work as late as the venue will allow

Saturday November 22nd

8:00 am
Arrive, simple breakfast & coffee

8:30 am
Optional Workshops
Attend one of our FREE workshops to learn skills you can immediately apply to your SWEDU startup

12:00 pm
After-lunch check-in, status reports, call for help

1:00 pm
Coach Meetings
Coaches help teams one-on-one. They are here to help!

4:00 pm
Brain Break

6:30 pm

7:30 pm
After-dinner check-in, status reports, call for help

10:00 pm
Finished for the day. You may stay and work as late as the venue will allow

Sunday November 23rd

8:00 am
Arrive, simple breakfast & coffee

9:00 am
Marketing Workshop
FREE workshop led by Startup Institute Boston

10:00 am
Coaches arrive. Final opportunity to ask questions

12:00 pm

1:00 pm
Pitch practice
Iron out the kinks and practice your pitch with coaches

3:00 pm
Presentation Prep & Tech Check
Final hours of worktime should be focused on perfecting your presentation, tech-check for final presentations also takes place

4:00 pm

5:00 pm
Final Presentations

7:30 pm
Judging & Awards

8:30 pm
Grab a drink and network with our sponsors, coaches, and judges!

9:00 pm
Go Home!

Event Judges

Marissa Lowman
Executive Director and Co-Founder at LearnLaunch Institute

Marissa co-founded LearnLaunch Institute, a non-profit dedicated to increasing student achievement through the adoption of digital technologies. It is part of LearnLaunch, an organization dedicated to connecting, supporting, and growing greater Boston’s education technology ecosystem to drive innovation and transform learning.  Previously, Marissa founded EdTechup which became part of LearnLaunch and was also a Marketing and Sales Manager at AisleBuyer.

Nick Ducoff
Vice President for New Ventures, Northeastern

As Vice President for New Ventures of the Northeastern University Global Network, Nick leads a cross-functional team to incubate new business ideas, diversify revenue streams, and advance a new model of education that moves beyond traditional boundaries. Previously, Nick lead Boundless' content team as VP for Content & Operations and founded Infochimps, leading the company as its CEO. Nick started his career as a corporate and securities attorney.

Kristin Sullivan
Program Director of Teaching & Learning Technologies, Harvard

Kristin serves as Program Director for the Teaching and Learning Technologies (TLT) Program at Harvard University. A Harvard IT strategic initiative, TLT provides a continually evolving set of faculty-friendly, student-centered technologies to support teaching and learning across Harvard schools, facilitate pedagogical innovation, and contribute to educational research. Kristin's functional background is in teaching and learning, and her professional focus is IT strategy and leadership. She loves helping people redefine what it means to teach, and what it means to learn.

Mark Racine
CIO, Boston Public Schools

Mark has been with BPS since 2007 in both teaching and technical capacities before becoming the District's Chief Information Officer.  

Chuck Olson
Partner at LTGO

Chuck Olson brings 30 years of executive experience in product vision, development, and business development strategy in educational technology.

For the past 10 years Chuck has been a partner at LTGO where he has been involved in growing development companies, building award winning products and establishing strong cross company partnerships, for Scholastic, HMH, Discovery education, PBS, Reader’s Digest, Follett, NetTrekker and others.

Prior to co-founding LTGO Chuck was a Founder and Chief Operating Officer at Quickdot Corporation, a start-up social networking company with venture backing, primarily from Charles River Ventures. Quickdot grew to over 6M users in 18 months.

As CEO of LearningWays, an independent educational software developer, he grew the company and sold it to Davidson & Associates in 1995. Later, he helped Davidson & Associates sell a group of development assets to Simon & Schuster, creating a new subsidiary, Learning Technology Group, where he served as CEO for three years.

Chuck also ran a five-product business unit at Lotus Development Corporation, where his successes included developing, and launching several Notes-related companion products. He started his work in the educational software business as part of the development team of the Bank Street Writer for Broderbund and Scholastic, ultimately leading that team.

Coaches and Mentors

Anurupa Ganguly
Sr. Director K-12 Mathematics

Anurupa is currently the Director of Secondary Math for Boston Public Schools.  Previously, she spent two years in Mumbai with Teach for India as a Selection Manager and Program Manager.  Anurupa started her career as TFA Corps member teaching in Boston and is a graduate of MIT.

John Carroll
VP Product Management and Marketing, Pearson

John has served in Product Management and Marketing roles within Education Technology companies for the past 14 years.  His present role is as VP Product Management & Marketing, Emerging Markets for Pearson Education in Boston, MA.

Jason Gorman
VP, Learning Experience Design Services

Jason works with his team to shape the learner’s environment as a natural, vibrant, intellectual and emotionally-engaging space—in which learners build their own knowledge. Jason started out as an English teacher, working with international students in San Francisco as well as in the United Arab Emirates. Before becoming a Marble, Jason consulted as Instructional Designer within the Harvard Graduate School of Education and also served as Senior Instructional Designer for Simmons College.

Zachary Davis
HarvardX Fellow

Zachary Davis is a fellow at HarvardX where he focuses on building open online courses in the humanities. Previously at the metaLAB (at) Harvard and the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, Zachary is a graduate of Brigham Young University, where he majored in International Relations and Philosophy.

Taylor Percival

Co-founder at ReadSource

Jessica Yarmosky

Co-founder at ReadSource

Ken Mazaika
Mentor at theFirehoseProject

Ken Mazaika is a web developer and Ruby on Rails contributor, as well as a mentor at theFireHoseProject. Previously he was a tech lead at (acquired by PayPal) and a member of the PayPal/eBay development team in Boston. In a previous life he turned a health insurance quotes generator from a $400/day web application into a $40,000/day business.

Marco Morawec

Marco Morawec is a web developer and user experience product manager. He consulted Fortune 500 companies like P&G and John Deere, won Boston's biggest Hackathon (Angelhack) and most recently led the user experience for peerTransfer, building a $500M/year international tuition payment platform.

Brendan Kohler
Programmer Extraordinaire

Brendan specializes in working with Python and Haskell, with a focus on distributed systems and processing big data. He is proficient in half a dozen other languages and has created a couple of his own as well.

Nicki Haylon
Creative Director - Libboo Inc.

Nicki Haylon currently works as the Creative Director of Libboo, a Boston-based publishing and technology startup. She manages front-end design and development for the company's products, as well as product strategy and brand creation. Coming from a background in graphic design and creative writing, Nicki was part of the inaugural class of Startup Institute Boston and continues to be involved as an instructor for the Web Design track of their part-time RampUp program. She is an HTML/CSS fanatic, and also works with PHP and the Laravel framework. When she is not working, Nicki is a big fan of superhero movies, books that are impossible to put down, tasty wheat beers, and the Boston Red Sox.

Lindsay Majane
Director of Product Marketing - CraveLabs

Lindsay is Director of Product Marketing at CraveLabs, a software company focused on geotargeted mobile advertising. She has previous experience as an account manager at top Boston ad agencies where she worked with higher ed clients such as IYRS, WPI, Husson, and American International College to improve branding and communications. Lindsay is also a Startup Institute alum and now teaches classes on marketing and networking.

Allan Telio
VP + Director, Boston - Startup Institute

Allan is responsible for helping run the Boston program as well as building copany wide operations. He's built teams for EnerNOC and Belkin International. Most recently he was the Vice President of Business Development for MyEnergy, which was acquired by Nest Labs. In his spare time, he likes to make ice cream and bake bread for his wife Katie and his children, Lucy and Eli. 

Trish Fontanilla
Global Director of Community - Startup Institute

Trish Fontanilla is the Global Director of Community at Startup Institute, a career accelerator focused on helping people develop the mindset, network, and skills they need to be successful at a startup. Prior to SI, she was the Vice President of Community & Customer Experience at Vsnap. Trish works to empower women and girls by serving on the events committees for Wonder Women of Boston and the Asian American Women in Leadership Conference. And she's also a mentor for the Technovation Challenge, the Emerson College Accelerator, and Babson's WIN Lab. 

Iba Masood
Co-founder & CEO- Gradberry

Iba co-founded Gradberry, a platform which enables motivated talent to discover and master in-demand skills and connect with employers. Gradberry is currently utilized by students, in 650 universities worldwide, to maximize their hiring potential, and has been featured in Techcrunch, Forbes and the Huffington Post. Iba is the recipient of multiple entrepreneurial awards and grants from organizations such as MIT and the United Nations, and specializes in product marketing, growth hacking and monetization strategies.

Brian Dant
Lead Developer - Startup Institute

Brian is the Lead Developer at Startup Institute, where's he contributing to the tech platform and coaching students to make their next career steps a reality. His biggest passion is helping people learn new skills and he loves watching people create things together. He does full stack development in the Python / Django environment. When he's not coding, Brian likes to read and hang with his wife Lydia.

Event Sponsors, and Partners

The Boston Startup Weekend EDU team is grateful for the support of local community partners without whom this event would not be possible.
Learn how to become a sponsor here.


Contributing Sponsor


Organizing Team

Techstars Startup Weekend Boston is 100% led by volunteer community leaders.
Learn how to get involved here

  • Alex
  • Fernando
  • Jared
  • Vicky


Vicky Guo
Director, Strategic Partnerships & Investments

Vicky is a Director of Strategic Partnerships & Investments at Pearson Education.  She works on Pearson's higher ed technology and distribution partnerships in North America and supports Pearson's direct investing activities.  Vicky was formerly a technology investor focused on growth-stage enterprise software, healthcare IT, and e-commerce companies. Before that, she worked at and was an investment banker.  

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