Submitted by Jessica Rothstein, Student, Fox School of Business


Submitted by Jessica Rothstein, Student, Fox School of Business


First Place:
Kovarvic LLC – (C.A.L.M.)
submitted by Daniel Couser, Fox School of Business

Second Place:
ConsiderCode, LLC
submitted by Kavun Nuggihalli, College of Science and Technology

Third Place:
submitted by Shreyas Chandragiri, Paul Gehret, and Kyle Jezler, College of Engineering

Fourth Place:
Jewish EDM
submitted by Justin Asaraf, School of Theater, Film, and Media Arts


First Place:
submitted by Jessica Rothstein, Student, Fox School of Business

Second Place:
Y Space, LLC
submitted by Zilong Zhao, Alumni, Fox School of Business

Third Place:
Osprey Drone Services
submitted by David Ettorre, Alumni, Fox School of Business

Fourth Place:
submitted by Robert Arnold, Alumni, Fox School of Business


First Place:
Ovarian Lab
submitted by Emily Kight, Student, College of Engineering

Second Place:
submitted by Thomas Dixon, Alumni, College of Education

Third Place:
Seeds Job Fair
submitted by Aiman Azfar A Rahman, Student, Fox School of Business

Fourth Place:
submitted by Abdulrahman Mohammed, Student, Fox School of Business

Competition in the 19th Annual Be Your Own Boss Bowl was tough. More than 150 Temple students, alumni, faculty and staff registered to participate in this year’s BYOBB, and after weeks of developing business plans, attending workshops and partnering with mentors, nearly 100 participating individuals and teams submitted their completed business plans for review. This week, 14 finalists were selected to compete at the BYOBB Live Pitch Competition, happening April 20th in Alter Hall.

Each finalist will make an 8-minute pitch to the expert judging panel and conduct a 3-minute Q&A session with the judges following their presentations. At the end of the day, a winner in each track will be announced, and one presenting company will go home with the $40,000 grand prize!

See below for the full list of 2017 BYOBB Finalists, and click here to register now for the Live Pitch Competition!

Undergraduate Track Finalists

Pinpointer submitted by Nigel Satenstein, Fox School of Business
Pitch submitted by Rishi Sheth (Fox School of Business), Andrew Sauber, and Anthony Poidomani (College of Science & Technology)
Prohibere submitted by Emily Kight, College of Engineering
Vitris submitted by Jack Perrotta, Fox School of Business

Upper Track Finalists

ENVIZZO submitted by Ariel Maidansky, Alumna, Fox School of Business
Nisoltus Medical, LLC submitted by Conor Vickers, Student, Lewis Katz School of Medicine
ToothShower, submitted by Lisa Guenst, Alumna, College of Liberal Arts
Viral Ideas Marketing, submitted by David Feinman, Alumnus, Fox School of Business

Social Impact Track Finalists

Frontier Legal Incubator,
submitted by Stephen Fox, Student, Beasley School of Law
Reels on Wheels, submitted by Anmol Gupta, Student, Fox School of Business
Sontefa Power, LLC, submitted by Thierno Diallo, Student, Fox School of Business
Understand Your Brand, LLC, submitted by Brandon Study, Student, Fox School of Buisiness

Urban Health Track

Strados Labs, submitted by Nick DelMonico, Student, Fox School of Business
Market Street Moms, submitted by Meghan Mallouk, Student, Fox School of Business


Fox School MBA alumnus Ben Stucker making his final presentation. Photos by Temple University Photography.
Fox School MBA alumnus Ben Stucker making his final presentation. Photos by Temple University Photography.

The creators of an online financial marketplace aiming to improve the consumer’s buying power in financial transactions won the grand prize at the 17th annual Be Your Own Boss Bowl®, a Temple University-wide business plan competition., co-founded by CEO and Fox School of Business alumnus Ben Stucker, MBA ’13, and CTO Alec Baker, took home more than $60,000 in cash prizes, in addition to products and professional services, at the April 16 final presentations at the Fox School.

“If I could have burst out of my skin, I would have. This was one of the most rewarding and exciting moments of my life,” said Stucker, a longtime mortgage industry professional., which registered its website domain only two months prior to the final presentations, hopes to become the top online destination for mortgage shoppers, Stucker said. He and Baker first met in February to lay the foundation for their company and “then we wrote our business plan in three weeks,” Stucker said.

What sets apart RatesForUs from others in the marketplace, Stucker said, is that they have worked closely with consumers to understand and support their needs.  From increased consumer privacy to allowing consumers to confidently obtain lower interest rates, Stucker said RatesForUs has taken steps to drastically improve the online shopping experience. With RatesForUs, Stucker said, personal information will only be shared when necessary and agreed to by the consumer, eliminating “the bombardment of calls and potential bias based on race, ethnicity or gender,” he said.

The cash and prizes from Be Your Own Boss Bowl® will support the continued development of the marketplace for RatesForUs, Stucker said.

“Our expenses to date have been minimal,” he said. “That’s intentional. We only take a step if we can measure the results for future decision-making purposes. First, we wanted to be sure consumers would value our service, so we talked to them. Then we took our survey results to the lenders that would be supplying the loans and they were interested. We’re going to continue using this lean methodology and complete the development of our marketplace. We are looking forward to continued interaction with those in our marketplace – lenders, consumers, and professionals.”

Innovation and Entrepreneurship Institute executive director Ellen Weber presenting Ben Stucker with the check. Photos by Temple University Photography.
Innovation and Entrepreneurship Institute executive director Ellen Weber presenting Ben Stucker with the check. Photos by Temple University Photography.

The annual Be Your Own Boss Bowl®, the flagship program of Temple’s Innovation and Entrepreneurship Institute (IEI), is one of the most lucrative and comprehensive business plan competitions in the country. This year, 12 business plans representing five of Temple’s 17 schools and colleges were selected as finalists. They competed for more than $160,000 in cash prizes, plus related products, professional services, and incubation space.

The competition features three distinctly different tracks: the Undergraduate Track, open to current Temple undergraduate students; the Upper Track, open to Temple graduate students, alumni, faculty and staff; and the Social Innovation Track.

Winners from each track were:

  • Upper Track:
  • Social Innovation Track: ROAR for Good, LLC, a developer of wearable self-defense tech designed for women. (Yasmine Mustafa, FOX ’06; Anthony Gold; Peter Eisenhower, ENG ‘11; Charlotte Wells, CLA ’15; Hunter Vargas, FOX ’16; and Christina Kazakia)
  • Undergraduate Track: Habitat LLC, a platform for students to buy and sell goods within their college communities. (Fox School students Andrew Nakkache, Michael Paskiewicz and Brandon Bahr, and Kathleen Chen)

For the sixth year, the IEI awarded the Chris Pavlides Spirit of Entrepreneurship Award to an undergraduate student who demonstrates a strong passion for entrepreneurship. This year’s recipient was junior entrepreneurship major Vincent Paolizzi.

Temple alumnus Christopher Wink, CLA ’08, received the 2015 Self-Made & Making Others Award. Wink is the co-founder and editor of, a network of local technology news sites and events.

Be Your Own Boss Bowl® participants benefit from coaching, mentoring and networking opportunities with the Philadelphia area’s leading business professionals, including members of GPSEG, the Greater Philadelphia Senior Executive Group. Overall, the competition receives support from 300 executives and entrepreneurs.

–Christopher A. Vito


Be Your Own Boss Bowl® 2015, by the numbers

$200,000        Value of monetary, products, services and mentorship prizes awarded
300                 Mentors and preliminary judges
143                 Overall participants in BYOBB
64                    Senior executive mentors
61                    Registered company submissions
32                    Participating finalist team members
19                    Sponsors
13                    Temple University schools and colleges represented in BYOBB
13                    Presentation coaches
12                    Finalist teams representing five Temple schools and colleges
6                      Finalist judges

BYOBB 2015 Poster

Be sure to register for the 17th annual Be Your Own Boss Bowl Finalists Presentations and Awards Ceremony on April 16 from 1- 5 p.m. in the lower level of Temple University’s Fox School of Business School’s auditorium. The competition’s 12 finalists will present their business plans to both students and judges, with the goal of winning up to $200 thousand in cash and prizes, including a space in the Innovation and Entrepreneurship Institute incubator and entrance into the business mentorship program.

Temple alumnus, Co-founder and Editorial Director of Philly, Christopher Wink, will be the keynote speaker and honored during the awards ceremony by receiving the “Temple Self-Made and Making Others Award.” Prior to founding his technology news networking site, he worked for a homeless advocacy nonprofit organization and was a freelance reporter for a variety of publications. Known as courageous and fierce by many, Christopher continues to provide tremendous leadership in the Philadelphia entrepreneurial and technology communities.

The BYOBB Finalists Presentation and Awards Ceremony is an open event, free for the public to vote for their favorite business to win big. Attendees will vote on a real-time feedback platform called YORN, Your Opinion. Right Now. Learn more about the BYOBB competition by visiting

Connect with the Innovation and Entrepreneurship Institute by following on Twitter and Instagram @IEIFox using the hashtag #BYOBB2015 and Facebook

All business plans for the  Be Your Own Boss Bowl (BYOBB) competition are due this Tuesday, March 17 at 11:59 p.m. Competitors will submit their plans to and BYOBB finalists will be announced by April 1. As a reminder, you must include three items in your application:

If you have any questions about the BYOBB competition please look at the BYOBB website, email or call 215-204-3082 for more information.  We will have people standing by until 8:00 pm on March 17th to answer questions. 

Don’t forget to use the hashtag #BYOBB2015 to join in on the conversation. 

Don’t miss this opportunity!

The deadline to submit your Temple Opportunity Description and get a BYOBB mentor is February 13, 2015. Click here to sign up today.




Photo from the 2014 Be Your Own Boss BowlGuiding Technologies (GT), a startup company focused on improving outcomes and quality of life for autistic children, won the coveted $125,000 grand prize at the 16th annual Be Your Own Boss Bowl®, Temple’s university-wide business plan competition – one of the most lucrative and comprehensive in the nation.  Over $225,000 in cash and prizes was awarded, and more than 450 senior executives, entrepreneurs and investors supported the competition through service as mentors, judges and coaches.

GT’s founder is Temple College of Science and Technology Professor John Nosek, the first-ever faculty member to win grand prize in the contest, which is open to Temple students, faculty, alumni and staff.  GT won more than $125,000 in cash and professional products and services at the April 24 finalist presentations held at the Fox School’s Alter Hall.

“Winning the BYOBB means development and field testing of GAINS™ will be accelerated. This will translate into helping individuals with autism and their families sooner – what a great outcome from this competition,” Nosek said.

Nosek has developed a mobile technology platform that systematizes and standardizes Applied Behavioral Analysis (ABA), the gold standard in treatment for autistic children.  Currently, one of every 68 children is diagnosed on the autism spectrum (over 1.1 million currently).  ABA is exceptionally costly, its effectiveness ranges due to inconsistency from one therapist to the next, and there is a scarcity of qualified ABA therapists.  Without ABA therapy between the ages of two and five, autistic children lead diminished lives with a 10-fold increase in lifetime costs.   GT will revolutionize the treatment of autism through its flagship product GAINS™ (Guidance, Assessment and Information System) because anyone with a smart phone or tablet can be coached step-by-step in real time to provide high-quality therapy.   GAINS™ will improve the consistency of ABA therapy, therefore increasing its efficacy while reducing costs.

“Guiding Technologies offers autistic children and their families around the world hope for greatly improved long-term outcomes,” said Jaine Lucas, executive director of Temple’s Innovation and Entrepreneurship Institute. “This is a classic example of the right product at the right time.  Judges were impressed by the overall sophistication of the plan, including its disruptive technology, smart and creative go-to-market strategy, revenue model, and potential to do well and do good.”

Other winners were:

  • First Place Undergraduate Track:  F.O.G. Systems – Pooja Thakkar, Clifford Greenfield and Robert Alexander, College of Engineering ’14; Second Place Undergraduate Track:  Manouk Hovhannesian and Sivon Pichoto, Fox School of Business ’14
  • First Place Social Innovation Track:  Philadelphia Urban Creators – Alex Epstein, College of Liberal Arts ’14, Devon Bailey, Denzel Thompson and Jeaninne; Second Place Social Innovation Track:  Citadelle Shades – Elizabeth Darnel, Fox School of Business, EMBA ’12, Colleen Gill, Penn State University and Mark Onesky, Fox School of Business, EMBA
  • First Place Graduate Student/Alumni/Faculty/Staff Track:  Whose Your Landlord – Ofo Ezeugwu, Fox School of Business ’13, Felix Addison, George Mason University, Kacper Rams, College of Science and Technology ’15, and Nik Korablin, College of Science and Technology ’13; Second Place Graduate Student/Alumni/Faculty/Staff Track:  Heart Upbeat! – Maria Cecilia Scimia, MD, PhD, Associate Scientist, Temple School of Medicine
  • Best Written Plan by a Woman:  Elizabeth Darne, Fox School of Business, EMBA ’12
  • Best Written Plan by a Minority:  Ofo Ezeugwu, Fox School of Business ’13
  • Best Written Cleantech Plan:  Scott Draper, Fox School of Business ’14

The annual Be Your Own Boss Bowl® competition is the flagship co-curricular program of Temple’s Innovation and Entrepreneurship Institute (IEI), which is based in Fox School of Business but serves students, alumni faculty and staff from all 17 schools and colleges at the university.  The IEI has been a top 15 ranked program nationally in entrepreneurship for 11 consecutive years.  Previous winners have been recognized by Forbes, Wall Street Journal, Entrepreneur magazine and other prestigious publications.

The Be Your Own Boss Bowl® deadline is fast approaching!
Receive feedback from senior executive mentors on financials, strategy, marketing, and other challenging sections of your business plan.

March 17th
Alter 503D

For more information on the Be Your Own Boss Bowl® click here