Startup Weekend NYCEDU

    Friday, March 27 - 29, 2015

  1. Overview
  2. Schedule
  3. Judges
  4. Coaches and Mentors
  5. Sponsors
  6. Organizing Team
  7. Blog
Buy Tickets

Event Alerts and Updates

Get the latest on Techstars Startup Weekend, New York City, and other local events through Techstars Startup Digest.

Oops! Double-check that email address.

Startup Weekend NYCEDU

Friday, March 27 - 29, 2015

Friday, March 27 - 29, 2015
Event starts at 5:30 pm

Avenues: The World School
259 10th Avenue
New York, NY 10001

Buy Tickets

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 complimentary skills & the passion & dedication to build a startup quick & smart. Test your idea with real potential customers, receive coaching from experienced education entrepreneurs & industry professionals, and win prizes that will help you take your startup idea to the next level of execution!

We're looking for passionate educators, parents, students, entrepreneurs, developers, and designers who want to make to make a difference in education now. Come learn the basics of founding & launching a successful education startup while solving real problems in education.

Still not sure? Come to our Pre-Event on March 17th hosted by General Assembly to meet the SW NYCEDU organizers and other participants and build your Edtech ideas.

Better yet, help us by volunteering. Sign up Here to volunteer. 

Related Events

Setup for Success Before/After Startup Weekend


Friday March 27th

5:30 pm
Arrive at the venue and get checked in

6:00 pm
Dinner & Networking
Eat food, share ideas, practice pitches, get to know fellow participants

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

7:20 pm
Pitches Start
Optionally line up to give your pitch

8:30 pm
Attendees vote for the top pitches

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

9:50 pm
Wrap up
Before wrapping up, make sure you start to take an inventory of skills and start planning your work!

Saturday March 28th

9:00 am
Arrive, simple breakfast & coffee

10:00 am
Morning Meeting
We will meet for announcement and a brief check-in to touch base on the day's proceedings.

12:00 pm
While you eat, make sure to submit your team survey!

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

4:00 pm
Coffee Break!

4:30 pm
Coach Meetings

6:30 pm

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

9:50 pm
Finished for the day. Venue closes at 10 PM.

Sunday March 29th

9:00 am
Arrive, simple breakfast & coffee

9:30 am
Morning Meeting
Updates and announcements.

10:00 am
Coach Meetings

12:00 pm

1:00 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
Coffee Break!

5:00 pm
Final Presentations

7:00 pm

7:30 pm
Judging & Awards

8:30 pm

9:00 pm
Go Home!

Event Judges

Preeti Birla

Preeti is the Director of Community, Outreach & Partnerships with Innovate NYC Schools.

Wiley Cerelli

Wiley is a Venture Partner for First Round Capital in New York, and in previous lives was lucky enough to have been a part of three amazing teams at SeamlessWeb, SinglePlatform and Constant Contact.

Christy Crawford

Christy Crawford is a teacher, education consultant and contributor to Scholastic's Top Teaching blog

Jason Deroner

Jason is the Chief Executive Officer at TeachBoost.

Coaches and Mentors

Arthur Tu
Co-Founder, Elemental Path

Arthur is co-founder and education technology lead at Elemental Path, the NYC-based tech startup that created a conversational smart toy line called Cognitoys. Prior to joining the founding team at Elemental Path, Arthur was co-founder and CTO of LearnBop Inc, an educational technology company that provides automated tutoring systems for K-12 mathematics that scaffold learning as expert teachers would, until LearnBop's acquisition by a publicly-traded education company in 2014. Arthur participated in DreamIt Ventures' first NYC cohort in 2011 as the founder of LearnBop. Startup Weekend and Startup Weekend Edu Mentor. Arthur was a former research associate in Intelligent Tutoring Systems at Carnegie Mellon's Human-computer Interaction institute and LearnLab. Philosophy, Dance and Music Hobbyist.

Kyle Jaster
Chief Product Officer, Noodle

Kyle has been building websites since 1996, and loves making things that "just work." As Chief Product Officer at Noodle Education he has extensive hands on experience in web development, user experience design, user and A/B testing, SEO best practices, virality hooks, search algorithms, web scraping, and prototyping.

Megs Shah
Founder, Kidhoo

I am a product developer and founder of Kidhoo. I founded Kidhoo in 2014 to help teachers, parents, and therapists plan, record, and share observations and tips related to goals and objectives. In addition, the application allows the team of people to collaborate on specific questions and comments for goals, objectives, observations and tips so everyone is on the same page. I love helping startup founders understand the product development cycle and how to engage customers for input outside of surveys.

David Fu
NYC Lead, 4.0 Schools

Fu is passionate about edu innovation & helping people launch ventures (schools/startups) to improve how, what & where students learn. He is a head of 4.0 Schools (& supports the broader edu ecosystem) in NYC. He can assist w/ biz model, sales cycle, pricing, customer validation.

Zak Schwarzman
Associate, Gotham Ventures

Zak is an Associate at Gotham Ventures, an early stage venture capital firm focused on the New York startup ecosystem. Zak maintains a focus on education technology, having spent the early part of his career in education--designing vocational training programs, co-founding an education focused nonprofit abroad.

Zak is available to help teams with business model design, market assessment, and pitch coaching.

Ben Dubin-Thaler
Founder and Executive Director, BioBus

Ben Dubin-Thaler is the founder and executive director of the BioBus mobile science lab and BioBase community science lab programs. He created the BioBus in 2008 after completing his BA in Physics and Mathematics as well as his Ph.D. in Biology from Columbia University. “Dr. Ben,” as he is known to students aboard the BioBus, started the BioBus as an experiment to test his hypothesis that, given the opportunity to use research-microscopes to perform live experiments, anyone would be excited about science and want to do more. Ben and his team create a new kind of laboratory space that is empowering, accessible, un-intimidating, and that facilitates scientific engagement amongst populations historically underrepresented in science professions. He hopes to create a future in which people from all backgrounds have equal opportunity to practice and understand science.

Carol Barash
Founder, Story2

I am a 20-year education innovator in school, business and community settings. I founded Story2 (fka "Story To College") in 2011 to empower students to tell authentic stories in high-stakes school, work and life transitions. I am inspired to help individuals and teams connect their businesses with their most powerful stories purpose.

Joe Ballou
High School Curriculum Specialist, Democracy Prep

Joe is an experienced educator and social impact entrepreneur - he has been in the education field since 2004, teaching high school from 2007-2011, and running an edtech startup from 2011-2013. Currently Joe is the high school curriculum specialist for the Democracy Prep Public Schools, working with a portfolio of four startup and turn-around schools. Joe also founded and co-organizes the Game-Based Learning NYC meetup group, which hosts monthly events. Joe can help teams with product, business & SWEDU strategy.

Kristen Paino
Technology Integrator, Avenues: The World School

Kristen is the Lead Technology Integrator at Avenues The World School. In her position, she supports teachers and students on a daily basis by facilitating innovation in the classroom. She will help teams by providing an educational perspective as well as giving helpful feedback and support.

Maurice Lauriano
Data/Technology & Family Engagement Director, NYCDOE

Mr. Maurice Lauriano is currently employed by the New York City Department of Education as a Data/Technology & Family Engagement Director for the largest system of public schools in the nation. In addition to retrieving student data, evaluating and verifying the accuracy of data, Mr. Lauriano is responsible for supporting 35 elementary and middle schools in utilizing technology to enhance literacy in all subject areas. He has a consistent track record of using data informed, research based best practices with twenty years of community engagement experience sustaining high-risk populations.

Richard Panzer
Founder / CEO, Kickit

Founder / CEO at Kickit. iOS & Rails Mentor at Bloc. Cofounder of Cornell's Coworking Space, the Popshop.
I'm happy to help with software and testing assumptions related to business ideas. I like thinking outside of the box and finding other paths to achieve better solutions.

Alexandra Diracles
Co-Founder, Vidcode

I'm a social entrepreneur and creative technologist who specializes in strategy, user experience design, and art + computer science EDU. I started my career in photography and didn't learn to code until my late twenties. In graduate school, I discovered computer science as an art form and made it my mission that teenage girls get the message today that computer programming is creative, human-centered and collaborative. Vidcode is an online platform that teaches teen girls programming by enabling them to hack their social media videos with code.

Elly Wingard
Educator, Avenues: The World School

Elly Wingard is an experienced educator that knows and understands the technological needs of both students and educators. She can provide insight from an educators perspective. As a coach, she will assist teams validate effective classroom products, the importance of differentiated technology applications for students, and resources that would better provide educators with data-driven technology integration.

Daniel Scibienski
ESL Teacher/Founding Team of June Labs

My name is Daniel Scibienski. I teach English Language Learners. I lead community engagement for June Labs. I run a consulting company. I organize Edcamps & hackathons. And I am interested in solving problems at the intersection of education, tech, community & entrepreneurship.

Melissa Halfon
cofounder, Vidcode

Melissa is the co-founder of Vidcode, a startup formed at Startup Weekend EDU in January 2014. She is the technology lead for Vidcode and loves that her position allows her to combine her passion for code and advocacy for women in STEM on a daily basis. Before Vidcode, Melissa was a quantitative programmer for an equity trading desk where she first learned the power of software development in real-world applications. She is first and foremast known to her peers as a math nerd.

Eugene Hawkin
Founder / Investor / Absentee CEO

Eugene is the Founder and Managing Partner of Quentin Road Ventures, an early stage investment fund and consultancy. Eugene is an experienced operator and serial entrepreneur who has completed several successful exits. His areas of expertise include startup management and financing, online and traditional media marketing, operations management and strategic growth management. Eugene is a big believer in the power of technology in education and has worked on and invested in several EduTech startups in the past. 

Matt Stehle
Instructional Designer

Matt is an instructional designer for an NYC based non-profit. Previously he taught middle school math and was a finance analyst. Matt is interested in the intersection of education and technology in the K - 12 space and is looking forward to being of assistance in this arena.

Stanley Buchesky
Managing Partner, The EdTech Fund

Stanley is the founder of The EdTech Fund, investing in seed stage education technology companies. He has a passion for education. Stanley first became involved in education while leading mergers and acquisitions for McGraw-Hill and then as one of the founding trustees of Equality Charter School. The three areas of investment focus for The EdTech Fund are: 1. Products the create greater student engagement, 2. Products that provide teachers greater insights into what students are learning (formative assessment tools), and 3. Products that save administrators and teachers time so they can focus on their primary job - TEACHING.

Kai Hsing
Sr. Design Strategist

Kai Hsing works with organizations to better understand and solve complex problems while creating more value for both businesses and customers. Working at the intersection of product, design and brand strategy, he specializes in experience design and innovation projects for Fortune 500 companies, high-growth startups and social organizations.
Recently, Kai has been a consultant to various companies including Johnson & Johnson, Huge and Google. He has worked with startups such as Theranos, a company revolutionizing healthcare testing, and MarkForged, manufacturer of the world’s first carbon-fiber 3D printer.
Previously, Kai worked for digital design agencies such as Digitas, TBWA\Digital Arts Network and Distill to partner with clients such as eBay, YouTube, LG, T-Mobile, Logitech and startups in the San Francisco Bay Area.
Kai has also worked with leading organizations in the social sector such as and the Corporation for Public Broadcasting. His work has been recognized by the Emmy and Webby Awards.

Roger Osorio
Entrepreneurship Program Leader @ IBM

Entrepreneurship program leader at IBM by day, math coach by night, and Startup Weekend global facilitator by weekend.  I deliver a powerful cocktail made up of education, psychology, neuroscience, leadership, and entrepreneurship.  I facilitate events to maximize the experience and learning for all participants.

Jimmy Chandler
UX Architect

Jimmy Chandler, an independent UX Architect, works with his clients to solve complex problems by designing user-friendly and effective websites and mobile apps. His clients have included Fortune 500 companies, startups, government agencies, and non-profits. Jimmy is available to help teams with UX/UI design, research/validation, and pitch presentations.

Don Buckley

Don is an innovator who believes design thinking needs to be part of every school's curriculum.

Laurel Schwartz

Laurel's experience has focused on school design and school leadership in district and charter public schools. She was the founding history teacher at KAPPA International High School, an International Baccalaureate school in the Bronx. After spending many years working to prepare high school students for college and career success in four short years, she decided to move down to middle school, where she is able to work with students earlier in their educational careers. In her current role as the AP of Instruction and Teacher Development, Laurel works with teachers to identify student needs, build teams, and develop and implement curriculum. As a stand-alone charter school, the staff at St HOPE Leadership Academy enjoys--and is burdened with--the flexibility to be innovative while being accountable for student growth and achievement. Through her experience leading schools to be innovative to prepare students for high school, college and career readiness, Laurel can help teams design products and services that will truly be useful for students, teachers and school leaders to support teaching and learning.

Laurel has a BA in Political Science, Asian Studies and Global Studies from the University of Pittsburgh, a MAT in Secondary Social Studies from Pace University, and an EdM in School Leadership from Harvard University. When she's not geeking out about education policy, Laurel enjoys pottery, biking, skiing and exploring.

Irfan Ebrahim
Product Manager/Designer

With a background in HCI and Engineering, I help companies create and develop products that focus on user needs, and help launch products in the market quickly. I can help teams figure out their product strategy and help them develop a great UX in hours! I was also a participant in 2013!

Adam Zalisk
Chief of Staff, Amplify Learning

Adam’s background is in strategy and operations in the education space. He has worked with publishers and technology companies, government, philanthropy, and in school management. Prior to his current role at Amplify Learning, Adam led innovation at Harlem Children’s Zone and was a founding member of Booz & Company’s North American education practice.

Michael Klein
Senior Educational Leader at BrightBytes

Michael is a teacher, coach and consultant on innovative learning models, and currently works as a Senior Educational Leader at BrightBytes. He has worked directly with Tony Wagner as research assistant on his most recent book, Creating Innovators: The Making of Young People Who Will Change the World. A founding teacher at High Tech High’s newest middle school in Chula Vista, Michael is passionate about Project-Based Learning, technology integration, and professional learning networks as means of empowering teachers and providing students with the 21st Century skills they need to succeed. Michael has a masters from Bank Street College in General Childhood Education.

Event Sponsors, and Partners

The Startup Weekend NYCEDU 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.

Signature Sponsors

Avenues: The World School is the first ever global school. Avenues opened its flagship campus in New York City in fall 2012 and plans to build campuses in 20+ of the world’s leading cities from Sao Paulo to Beijing -- all connected and supported by a common vision and shared curriculum. We are excited to welcome NYCEDU

Visit Website



Organizing Team

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

  • Deborah
  • Ben
  • Laura
  • Ingrid
  • David


Lee Ngo
Educational Technology Community Architect

Lee Ngo is an educational technology community architect and founded his startup Scholar Hero through Startup Weekend. Previously, he served as Regional Manager for UP Global (acquired by Techstars) and has worked for educational organizations such as Strayer University, Galvanize, and Metis. Lee is currently the Chief Operating Officer with the Greater Foundation (

Event Blog

See Full Blog