Points of Pride

2022 Startup Vikes Winners

Providing Pathways for CSU Student Entrepreneurs

The ninth Startup Vikes competition was held Thursday, November 17th through Saturday, November 19th in Monte Ahuja Hall (the Business Building) and the Roberta Steinbacher Atrium (the Levin College of Education & Public Affairs building) on the Cleveland State University campus successfully awarded the top three (3) companies created during the weekend prizes and cash infusion packages as well as a People's Choice award winner. 

The winning businesses that received a cash infusion and prize package were:

Startup Vikes 2022 - Team LokofreshLoko Fresh ($1,000)

Organic produce delivered to you through a simple, easy to use mobile application. Loko Fresh will support the local economy and enable farmers to eliminate waste and ultimately benefit the environment and also give consumers access to healthier foods.

  • Suthan Chum, Business
  • Darrian Merritt, Exploratory
  • Alejandro Sema, Marketing
  • Nicholas Tamjidi, Business Studies
  • Camden Thompson, General Business
  • Mike Yoke, Marketing

Startup Vikes 2022 Team Re-Me RentalsRe-Me Rentals ($700)

A marketplace for individuals and businesses to monetize the items that they have, but use only a few times a year to offer those items up for rent/use by other individuals or businesses.

  • Rushik Bandodkar, MBA
  • Teresha Sims
  • Joanie Westphal, Exploratory

Startup Vikes 2022 Team Brilliant Brains & TutorsBrilliant Brains & Tutors ($500)

Brilliant Brains & Tutors connects students with study groups, materials and tutors when they are available. Students can set their own time, place (in-person or online) to meet.

  • Bassin Alussain
  • Ankur Darjil, Supply Chain
  • Anthonie Jackson, General Business
  • Megan Rodriguez, General Business
  • Eliseiana Soto, MBA
  • Keyshona Ward, Psychology

Startup Vikes 2022 Team BoppingBopping ($200)

App for bar patrons to identify real-time occupancy and wait times to enter and for bar owners to market their scarcity or their lack of capacity in their establishment to potential patrons.

  • Mia Boumitri, Marketing
  • Jonathan DePiero, Mechanical Engineering
  • Brittany Hurt, Information Systems
  • Yelson Plata, MBA
  • Aaron Yu, Business Economics
  • Timothy Zvoncheck, Finance
The other teams and participants included:

Event Connect

Events Connect is a centralized platform that helps people manage events from start to finish. It also serves as a marketplace for a variety of vendors and space/venue owners. Events in the palm of your hand.

  • Ajay Bhupatiraju, Master of Information Systems
  • Laurel Paul, Computer Science
  • Jack Whitman, General Business
  • Regina Woods, MBA


A wearable medical device that provides a health tracker and health alarm to alert individuals with diabetes of when they may need to take steps to avoid potential life-threatening or health damaging events.

  • Rayah Alsukhayri, General Business
  • Somiya Faust, Organizational Leadership and Non-Profit Administration
  • Hannah Pitsenbarger, Business

“We are very proud of all of the businesses developed during Startup Vikes,” said Colette Hart, senior director for the Centers of Outreach and Engagement. “The weekend provides a pathway for entrepreneurship – one that we hope that all of our teams will pursue after the event and demonstrates Cleveland State University’s commitment to providing engaged learning that impacts Northeast Ohio.”

“For the winners and the teams formed, now the real work begins,” added Hart. “Most of the businesses and individuals who participated will now begin refining their business models through the Weston Ideation Lab Accelerator program or at our Small Business Development Center.”

Students from 5 different colleges at Cleveland State came together to form 6 teams. The teams were supported by 24 mentors over the course of 3 days. The mentors and presenters provided help, guidance and resources throughout the weekend ranging from strategy, branding, marketing, sales, financial, legal, design services and manufacturing to name a few.

The teams were then judged by EbaNee Bond, Teresa Lindsey, Dick Seif and Claude Zoghzoghi (CSU Finance alumnus).

Startup Vikes 2022 Final Night

Sponsors included the Burton D. Morgan Foundation, OBSV Group, James Deiotte, Channel Products, the Fornari Family, Sittoo’s, the Veale Institute for Entrepreneurship at Case Western Reserve University, HeyNow Media, CLE Urban Winery and PickFu.

The winning teams were featured by CSU President, Laura Bloomberg in her monthly newsletter, CSU Matters at the end of November 2022. Watch the interviews on YouTube here.