Sam Hollander ’22 selected for LaunchPad @ Startup Grind competition

Heade shot of an entrepreneur looking into the camera

Congratulations to Sam Hollander ’22 (Whitman and Newhouse), founder of FSCL, who was selected as one of 30 semi-finalist teams from a large field of student startups across the country to compete in the Blackstone LaunchPad & Techstars network pitch challenge.  The event is an opportunity for student startups from across the LaunchPad global network to compete for over $50,000 in prize money, mentorship and feedback from top investors.

Hollander was a finalist last week in the EO’s Global Student Entrepreneurship Award (GSEA) competition. He is a Syracuse LaunchPad Rubin Family Innovation Mentor, LaunchPad Orange Ambassador and has been a Syracuse LaunchPad Global Fellow.  He recently completed a Blackstone LaunchPad & Techstars Fellowship.  He has been very actively engaged in LaunchPad programming, including organizing Syracuse University’s first Startup Weekend and many other campus events.

FSCL is an alternative finance vehicle that is a simple, affordable and flexible solution to finance higher education.

The 2021 competition will be held within Startup Grind’s virtual Global Conference. Seven finalist teams will be selected from the semi-final round to go on and pitch in the finals in front of industry-leading judges and a global virtual audience.  The final competition will be hosted by Marcus Felder, Vice President, Blackstone Career Pathways, and judges will include:

  • David Cohen, Co-Founder and Managing Partner, Techstars
  • Brian Brackeen, General Partner, Lightship Capital
  • Christine Feng, Senior Managing Director, Blackstone Growth

Besides Syracuse University, other teams hail from:

  • Cornell University
  • Montana State University
  • New York University
  • State University of New York at Albany
  • State University of New York at Buffalo
  • Temple University
  • The University of Texas at El Paso (UTEP)
  • Trinity College Dublin
  • University of California, Berkeley
  • University of California, Davis
  • University of California, Irvine
  • University of California, Los Angeles
  • University of California, Riverside
  • University of California, San Diego
  • University of Central Florida
  • University of Southern California
  • University of Texas at Austin
  • University of Texas at Dallas
  • University of Texas at San Antonio
  • University of Texas at the Permian Basin

The LaunchPad network recently added six new schools from the University of Texas system as a part of a commitment to supporting diverse and underrepresented students in exploring opportunities associated with entrepreneurship.  Additionally, the network recently added a number of additional University of California system schools.  There are now 30 universities in the network, including universities in New York, Pennsylvania, Florida, Montana, Texas, California and Ireland.