Edozie Ezeanolue '22
Edozie Ezeanolue ‘22, founder of NXSTEP, applied to the IDEA Center’s Race to Revenue program, intending to use the summer to develop his company. NXSTEP is a web-based platform that provides an “unmatched method for high school students to learn more about colleges and universities through 1-on-1 match-made conversations with current college students.”
Edozie was drawn to the summer internship program in order to be able to spend time around other entrepreneurs and benefit from the help he anticipated he would receive from people who are personally experienced in startups and business development.
On Friday, July 31, the 10-week Race to Revenue summer internship program concluded with a Demo Day, when Racers were given the opportunity to pitch their company to judges, receive feedback and compete for cash prizes. The teams were batched into groups based on the amount of their financial ask. Edozie was awarded first place for NXSTEP in the <$2k category. (You can view Edozie’s 7-minute pitch and judge’s feedback here.)
When asked to explain the key benefit of his experience this past summer, Edozie stated that he believes “making connections are key, and the differentiator in terms of whether a startup will or won’t succeed.” Race to Revenue delivered in this area, says Edozie, increasing his network and enabling him to personally gain insight from entrepreneurs who have successfully built and sold businesses. Access to guest speakers, his coach, other mentors, and the Demo Day judges all provided value over the course of the program.
Edozie now has the summer’s valuable experience behind him, more partners and supporters alongside him and the NXSTEP team, and the company’s next steps, more clear.