Jennifer Beall changed majors while attending Duke University, as well as taking various courses in markets and management, entrepreneurship, and leadership. She also engaged in groups, taking a leadership role in one of them. Even with this education, Jennifer states that being a Venture Capital Intern was her “number one learning experience” in asking for monetary assistance for her future endeavors. What was her future startup? In 2010, she started CleanBeeBaby, which later became The Tot Squad. The Tot Squad offers car seat cleaning and installation, stroller cleaning and repairs, and cleaning other baby gear.
Duke University students obviously care about the world around them. One such alumnus, Ankesh Madan, along with other fellow alumni, developed a great lifesaving item for women – Undercover Colors (@UndercoverColor on Twitter), a nail polish sticker that changes color when it comes in contact with date-rape drugs in beverages. The protect is meant to serve as a preventative to date rape–which is unfortunately an issue that has been extremely prevalent on college campuses. Undercover Colors’ founders hope to combat the serious issue of date rape while also spreading awareness of it through their product.
Brooks Bell was an entrepreneur from the word go. Towards the end of her freshman year at Duke University, she started out at Tuition Painters, managing a painting team and marketing her services. Afterward, she learned even more about entrepreneurship through being an intern for AuctionRover.com. In her junior year, she started an online company with another student, but due to partner issues, she decided to start her own business. Brooks Bell Interactive wants companies to be more strategic in their planning and testing, as well as to increase efficient workflow, and to better understand their customers.
Taylor Mingos (@taylormingos) wants to see businesses better organized with Shoeboxed, an excellent way to turn receipts, business cards, and other important paperwork into data.
Tito Bohrt thought about the book purchases of future students, as buying new books from the college bookstore is so expensive. ShelfRelief.com was set up to match up students from the same college to buy and sell books to one another.
Duke University sets students up for success with a unique program that integrates both social innovation and entrepreneurship. The alumni mentioned above and others received the necessary keys to open their minds for future endeavors. As a result, these individuals have made the world a better and safer place.