NEWARK – Sierra RyanWallick has been a social entrepreneur since she was 10 years old.
Now a student at the University of Delaware, her passion culminated in her sustainable fashion startup, Ascending cycle design, placing first in the post-recipe track at the 2021 Hen Hatch startup competition and first in the Great Dames Remarkable Ideas pitch competition.
the Hen hatching The contest for entrepreneurial students at the University of Delaware, held virtually on December 4, featured healthy candy bar presentations, virtual wellness coaching, cultural catering service and more.
RyanWallick received $ 7,250 in cash, which she says will be used to pay allowances to her team as well as new equipment for their upcoming product launches. She also received 20 hours of business consulting services from Placers. Up Cycle Design received $ 2,500 for travel expenses to third party entrepreneurship competitions.
The UD student presented her startup to the judges as “a huge economic opportunity and a huge opportunity for social impact.” To combat textile waste, Up Cycle collects small pieces of fabric that would otherwise be thrown away and creates zero waste products, such as stickers and fabric bags.
The Woven into Up Cycle Business Plan is a charitable program in which RyanWallick works directly with nonprofits to create designs for its products. Up Cycle donates 15% of each unit sold to the association.
“Nonprofits are happy to sell our products themselves,” said RyanWallick. “It is also a way for them to raise funds in a sustainable way because most fundraising methods or products are not sustainable.”
Community engagement is at the heart of RyanWallick’s vision: Through her social entrepreneurship program, Level Up, she partners with organizations like The Warehouse in East Wilmington to teach high school students about entrepreneurship, design and sustainability. Student cohorts go through the same process as Up Cycle for choosing a nonprofit organization to support and research, create and deliver custom designs. Students learn how to market and organize a fundraising campaign for the winning design.
“It’s really cool to empower teens locally and get those proximity marketing campaigns out of it as well,” RyanWallick said.
RyanWallick plans to expand Level Up and create an embroidery training program for people who have barriers to employment, such as people with disabilities.
The Hen Hatch winner recently celebrated another milestone: AutumnLeaf Fundraisers, the association she founded when she was 10, has reached $ 100,000 in nonprofit giving. Most of the money raised through AutumnLeaf’s crafts is donated to a local cat rescue, Forgotten Cats.
Up Cycle will relaunch a new line of themed stickers in January, and RyanWallick plans to focus on expanding its product line, with fabric bags, home decorations and other accessories on the horizon.
“We have a product that sells and we’re expanding it,” RyanWallick said. “I can’t wait to do this all my life. “
Stemmer, a web application created by Samuel Goetz that automates the process of organizing music sound engineers, ranks second in Hen Hatch’s post-recipe track. Stemmer received a cash award of $ 4,500 and 10 hours of accounting service from Belfint Lyons Shuman. Stemmer won the Audience Choice Award for Most Promising Startup, which comes with $ 1,000 to spend on business model research expenses as a member of VentureOn. Stemmer also received $ 2,500 for expenses for a third-party entrepreneurship competition.
Pick-Up Sports, a youth sports program that encourages young people to become multisport athletes and founded by Michael Meola, placed third in the post-income category with a cash prize of $ 3,250 and $ 2,500 to support trips to other entrepreneurship competitions.
Share Wallet, a startup founded by Jason Bangser that streamlines mutual rewards by connecting product and service referral links from friends on a social platform, is leading the pre-income trail. Share Wallet received $ 4,800 in cash, in-kind gifts such as Devlin law firm providing legal services and filing fees for a trademark or patent application, 10 hours of accounting services by Belfint Lyons Shuman and $ 2,500 for third-party entrepreneurship competitions.
Navigating Access, a crowd-based interactive accessibility map founded by Amanda Zicherman, placed second with a cash prize of $ 2,900 and $ 2,500 for travel expenses to third-party entrepreneurship contests. Navigating Access received the Audience Choice Award for Most Motivated Startup, which recognizes $ 1,000 to spend on business model research expenses as a member of VentureOn.
Supremely Sweet, a startup founded by Santha Rani and Esha Shah that offers sweet and healthy options like chocolate bars, placed third in the pre-income category with $ 2,300 in cash and $ 2,500 to support expenses. third-party entrepreneurship competitions.