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Milken-Penn GSE Education Business Plan Competition

2022 Competition

Congratulations to the 2022 Milken-Penn GSE Education Business Plan Competition Winners!


  • $40,000 Foundations of the Milken Families Grand Prize: Words Liive
  • $25,000 Globant, Inc. Prize: HeyKiddo
  • $10,000 Cascade Communications Prize: Arbol
  • $5,000 Audience Choice Prize presented by Osage Venture Partners: Clarifi


The finalists also received a portion of $50,000 in Amazon Web Services credits; a Padcaster video production system each; grant consulting from TurboSBIR; and, $1000 cash and an iPad bundle each from Catalyst @ Penn GSE.


Congratulations to the seven finalists who will compete in the virtual pitch competition on Wednesday, October 12, 2022. These outstanding ventures are united in their drive to reduce inequities in education through innovation. They're working across diverse areas including college readiness and completion, social-emotional learning and mental health, digital inclusivity for blind and low-vision students, STEM-based learning for marginalized populations, and more. Read press release.

Arbol—Arbol is a platform that helps low-income college students graduate through finance and community. (Founders: David Gonzalez, Favio Osorio)

Clarifi Education PBC—Clarifi is an evidence-based, digital homework tool for teens with ADHD and attention challenges who want to complete their work more efficiently and independently. (Founders: Bryan Dinner, Bradley Levergood, Melissa Dvorsky)

HeyKiddo—HeyKiddo helps parents, caretakers, and educators anticipate, detect, and address mental, social and/or emotional health struggles in their kiddos. (Founder: Nicole Lipkin)

Hire Cause—Hire Cause supports middle and high schools with career-readiness programs that have a social impact. (Founder: David Dvorkin)

Kabara—Kabara Community Development Initiative is a nonprofit that provides STEM-based learning for youths with a focus on girls in northern Nigeria—a region with population displacement, low literacy levels, and restrictive access to secular education. (Founder: Hadiza Garbati)

Trestle Labs—Trestle Labs empowers schools, colleges, and universities to become digitally inclusive for blind and low-vision students through Kibo, which enables them to listen, translate, digitize, and audio'tize any printed, handwritten, or digital content across 60 global languages. (Founders: Akshita Sachdeva, Bonny Dave)

Words Liive—Words Liive is a futuristic edtech startup dedicated to achieving a ‘Moonshot Goal’ of getting two-thirds of the nation’s students at or above their grade-level reading proficiency by the year 2045 via The Opus App which integrates real music—via song lyrics that students love—into core literacy instruction for fourth- through twelfth-graders. (Founder: Sage Salvo)

Cash & Prizes

Since 2010, the Milken-Penn GSE Education Business Plan Competition has awarded more than $1.5 million in cash and prizes to education ventures making an impact through innovation. This year, we're thrilled to offer more than $150,000 in cash and prizes:

  • Michael & Lori Milken Family Foundation Grand Prize: $40,000
  • Globant Prize: $25,000
  • Cascade Communications Prize:$10,000
  • Audience Choice Prize presented by Osage Venture Partners: $5,000
  • $50,000 in Amazon Web Services credits distributed among finalists
  • Padcaster video production system for each finalist
  • Grant consulting from TurboSBIR for each finalist
  • Plus, $1000 and iPad bundle for each finalist from Catalyst @ Penn GSE

Learn more about the competition rules and judging.


Our Sponsors

The Milken-Penn GSE EBPC is grateful to our additional generous and forward-thinking sponsors: