The Global Impact Awards are open to WashU students, postdoctoral researchers, and recent alumni who create scalable, sustainable, and impactful ventures. On April 27th, the 2021 finalists compete for the chance to win up to $50,000.

Leading up to the event, the Skandalaris Center blog featured a Q&A series spotlighting finalists and their achievements. Here are some of their insightful takeaways:


Purple thought bubble What is your #1 tip for building a strong team?

“Find people that are eager to get their hands dirty. Working for a start-up often means that resources are limited. As a result, everyone needs to be willing to contribute across the business. Hard skills can be taught but passion around an idea and doing whatever it takes to make it happen is a hard thing to learn.”

 – Jessica Landzberg and Olivia Bordson, co-founders of Pareto


What is the most challenging part about being an entrepreneur?

“The most challenging part is uncertainty. Unforeseen obstacles and unidentified risks can slow down the progress and prevent us from reaching our milestones. However, we learned that there is always a way to mitigate these obstacles if we think differently.”

– Raphael Chung and Kevin Park, co-founders of Cedars Health, Inc.


What do you love about being an entrepreneur?

“You learn something new every day. The fun part is deciding what to do with the information.”

 – David Brost, Brett Adlard, Edward Hayes, and Breck Furnas, co-founders of Qilo


What words of advice do you have for those starting a business?

“When you have an idea for a business, find quick ways to validate it—talk to your customers, build a prototype, and ask them to sign up or buy it. Learn and iterate from there. If you wait for your solution to be perfect before getting it to market, you’ll be waiting forever.”

 – Tripp Brockway and Michael Offerman, co-founders of Caregather


Yellow thought bubble

What is your favorite part about being an entrepreneur?

“My favorite part of being an entrepreneur is the creativity and the impact I see my venture having on people. I love the process of researching and creating products that are solutions for so many people.”

 – Fanta Kaba, founder of Golden Roots Essentials