On Tuesday, Oct. 18, six teams faced off in the Center for the Sciences and Innovation Cube for the chance to win $25,000 for their startups in the final round of the eighth annual Louis H. Stumberg New Venture Competition. The Stumberg Competition is a two-part event hosted by the Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship that supports and mentors compelling student startups from creation to implementation.
This year’s six teams included FARO: Projects for Education, Pacific Debate Institute, Range Rehab, ReCap, Skelton Musical, and Wherezy. These teams qualified after first surviving the preliminary seed round last spring and preparing for the final round through the Summer Accelerator program.
After pitching their startups to the distinguished judges, two teams, Range Rehab and ReCap, won the grand prize, the first time in the history of the competition that two winners were selected. Because of Trinity’s commitment to its students, experiential learning, and growing the startup ecosystem both teams each received the full grand prize of $25,000 for their startups. The competition’s runner-up, Skelton Musical, was selected as the audience favorite and won $5,000 for their startup.
Both of the winning teams created products that aimed to help people’s health in some capacity. Range Rehab members pitched a physical therapy device that helps people recovering from debilitating shoulder injuries safely rebuild their range of motion. ReCap members pitched a mobile app that tracks spending habits and sets saving milestones to alleviate the stress that comes with managing one’s finances.
Range Rehab consists of CEO Anthony (AJ) Bishop ’22, COO Marriana Sayen ’25, Andrew Koob ’22, and Neha Kapur ’22. During the Summer Accelerator, the team perfected its two-arch design with more comfortable materials and tested it by sending free trials to local physical therapists.
Range Rehab’s updated design and free trial process successfully proved to the judges of the final round their product’s effectiveness and demand in the market. Now, thanks to its $25,000 grand prize, Range Rehab can move forward with expanding the stock of its product.
“Winning the Stumberg Competition gives us the capital necessary to cover our FDA registration fee and place bulk orders to build our initial inventory to begin generating sales,” Bishop says.
ReCap also benefited from its time in the Summer Accelerator. ReCap was co-founded by Joey Hersh ’24, Alexandra Garcia ’24, Max Hightower ’24, and Ashwin Ramesh ’24. During the summer, the team honed its app by focusing on a more roadmap-style layout that gives users step-by-step guidance for achieving their saving goals. The app now relies heavily on receipts from past purchases to help suggest similar, but more affordable, products to help reduce spending.
“We are so grateful for this past summer and the opportunities that this program has provided us,” Hersh says. “It has been amazing to have a safe space to fail and build ourselves back stronger, and to have the resources to turn our vision into reality. We would like to thank everyone who helped us along the way—our mentors, our team members, Geekdom, and Trinity Entrepreneurship, and everyone who took the time to help us learn and grow.”
For Range Rehab and ReCap, winning the final round of the Stumberg Competition may feel like the end of the road, but it’s only the beginning of the bright futures of their startups.
“We're extremely excited for the future of ReCap and the next milestones to come,” Ramesh says. “This isn't the end of our journey, it's the beginning, and we're so grateful and lucky to get the chance to start.”