BME startup wins $200,000 prize

Luso Labs, a startup founded by four BME BS’16 students won a $200,000 prize at the 2018 Vodafone Americas 10th annual Wireless Innovation Project. The company, which formed in the 2016 Senior Design course, is co-founded by Jahrane Dale, Olachi Oleru, Stephanie Yang, and Ritish Patnaik and is advised by BME professors Aaron Kyle and Katie Reuther. cerVIA, their product, aims to provide “automated, accurate, and accessible cervical cancer screening worldwide”. Previous awardees of this competition include Columbia-founded Neopenda in 2016.

The Vodafone Americas Foundation, at the Social Innovation Summit 2018 in San Francisco, unveiled today the winners of its 10th annual Wireless Innovation Project (WIP), a competition awarding $600,000 in grants to the latest connected innovations designed to address critical issues facing the global community.

In its 10th year of competition, the Vodafone Americas Foundation WIP has now awarded $6.1 million in grants to entrepreneurs, startups, non-government organizations (NGOs), nonprofits and university projects building scalable, social good technologies focused on “Connecting for Good.” cerVIA will join the previous 27 WIP winners who have directly affected more than 40 million lives across 40 different countries. Past WIP winners have gone on to future success through international accolades, various industry prizes and more than $9.5 million in additional funding.

“Since its launch in 2009, the Wireless Innovation Project has built a strong network of inspiring entrepreneurs developing technologies that positively impact communities around the world,” said Andrew Morawski, Board of Directors Chairman and President, Vodafone Americas Foundation. “We view SMART, cerVIA and ENVision Mobile as great additions to the WIP community and look forward to helping them bring their innovative solutions to market to help solve critical issues such as disease and financial illiteracy.”  

Each awarded grant will be issued over the course of three years. In addition to grant funds, WIP recipients receive support and guidance to advance their solutions to reach the global marketplace. Vodafone brings technical expertise, partnerships and global reach that accelerate mobile innovations to deliver wider social impact than they could achieve alone.

Learn more about the winners of this year’s Wireless Innovation Project in the video below:


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