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Startups

Lillian Hoodes ’13 MA is helping to fix a common problem for environmentally aware hikers: how to pack nutritious food when headed out on the trail. Hoodes is co-founder and CEO of TrailFork, a company dedicated to providing outdoor adventurers with sustainably packaged and healthy dehydrated food.

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lilian hoodes trailfork
Dom Collins ’16 JD, MBA had been working as a media and entertainment banker on Wall Street for a year when he got the itch to leave his day job and pursue his passion. Drawing on his legal and business background, Collins formed Domarco7 Entertainment and launched an R&B career in New York City under the stage name Dom Marcell.

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Americans throw away about 300 million pairs of shoes each year. Almost all of them end up in landfills, where they can take centuries to break down.

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innovation scoots numbered
Brent Chase knows the pain and helplessness of watching a loved one go through a physically and emotionally damaging autistic meltdown. Chase’s younger brother, Alec, was diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) when he was 3 years old.

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brent and alec chase gaia wearables
As a James Beard Award–winning journalist for New York Magazine, Sierra Tishgart ’12 ate at some of New York City’s finest restaurants, but she wanted to cook better meals at home and realized she needed different pots and pans. Frustrated by the potential expense and unsure about what cookware she needed and why, Tishgart set out to create her own line of kitchenware, Great Jones.

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sierra tishgart great jones cookware
Since returning home to China seven years ago, Bozhong Xue has revitalized the NU Club of Beijing, interviewed prospective students as a member of the Alumni Admission Council, recruited high school students to volunteer for the Northwestern University Symphony Orchestra concert last spring and supported international student scholarships at the Bienen School of Music. For his efforts, Xue received the inaugural Northwestern Alumni Association President’s Award in September.

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bozhong xue

One Lucky Duck

Spring 2019
Hannah Chung ’12 hopes to make the treatment of childhood cancer a little more bearable. The co-founder of Sproutel, Chung works alongside CEO and co-founder Aaron Horowitz ’12 to design products that make a meaningful health impact on the lives of patients.

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duck on box

Say Cheesecake

Spring 2019
Marc Schulman, president of Eli’s Cheesecake, oversees an operation that produces 20,000 desserts daily and served cheesecake for the inaugurations of Bill Clinton and Barack Obama ’06 H. Schulman is also an outspoken advocate for career and technical education.

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marc schulman

People Power

Spring 2019
Kristen Sanders built People6, a digital marketing agency that employs college students to create and execute holistic marketing solutions and research for businesses and entrepreneurs. People6 has hired more than 30 students to complete nearly 20 projects, ranging from research for New Founders PAC to a new website design and branding plan for Roycemore School, near the Evanston campus.

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kristin sanders
As Garry Cooper ’14 PhD prepared to throw out used equipment at a Feinberg School of Medicine lab in 2015, an idea hit him: Lightly used, expensive research equipment could be reused rather than trashed. “I kept seeing reports about the funding problems in scientific research — how really smart and innovative junior faculty members are leaving academia and going into industry because of the job and funding prospects,” says Cooper, who studied neuroscience.

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gary cooper lab