Wednesday, September 07, 2016

NY SBDC Technology Entrepreneur of the Year – Elena Yakubovskaya, Mindwick

Elena Yakubovskaya, a research scientist at SUNY Stony Brook, earned her Ph.D in the field of molecular and structural biology in Russia. Ten years ago in her spare time, she was one of the founders of School Nova at Stony Brook, which provides supplemental STEM instruction to elementary students on weekends. In addition, she is the Director of Sigma Camp, a summer STEM educational camp for gifted students. In 2014, Elena started Mindwick, Inc. with the goal of promoting early science education for students in grades 1-3. In 2015 Mindwick was awarded a $150,000 Phase I SBIR grant from the National Science Foundation (NSF) to develop "Ready for STEM" - a new educational program for improving reasoning skills in elementary school students. The Phase I “proof of concept” work results were well received when submitted to the National Science Foundation. In 2016, Elena applied for a Phase II $750,000 NSF grant and two new Phase I grants at other agencies. Elena is confident that with the support of the SBDC, her dream of developing a commercialized version of "Ready for STEM" can be realized.

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