WISE Accelerator Announces New Cohort of ‘EdTech’ Initiatives

Press release
Published July 11th, 2018 - 11:55 GMT
Mursal Hedayat, Co-founder and Director of Chatterbox
Mursal Hedayat, Co-founder and Director of Chatterbox

The World Innovation Summit for Education (WISE), an initiative of Qatar Foundation (QF), has revealed the five ‘EdTech’ initiatives selected to join its 2018-19 WISE Accelerator program.

The five 2018-19 WISE Accelerator initiatives will kick off the program during the [email protected] forum that will take place on September 22 in New York. During the forum, representatives of these initiatives will take part in workshops, attend classes, and participate in pitching sessions.

The WISE Accelerator team will also organize high-level meetings between representatives of the five initiatives and leaders and entrepreneurs from organizations that are developing solutions and programs in education and EdTech.

Mursal Hedayat, Co-founder and Director of Chatterbox, a member of the newly-selected WISE Accelerator cohort, said: “We are absolutely delighted to be part of the upcoming WISE Accelerator program, and we look forward to working with the team and their incredible network of mentors and partners to bring a timely and impactful idea like Chatterbox to life.”

The WISE Accelerator supports the development of innovative education technology initiatives with high potential to make a positive impact. The selected initiatives receive support from mentors and WISE partners to scale up their startups, improve their international visibility, and identify potential partners, donors, and investors through networking opportunities organized by WISE.

Outlining the benefits of being part of the WISE Accelerator, Chibeza Agley, Co-founder and CEO of CamBioScience, a member of the program’s 2017-18 cohort, said: "The WISE Accelerator has had a profound impact on the development and scale-up of CamBioScience.

“The program provided the team with hand-picked mentors whose profile and experience matched the needs of our business, and the level of expert support we have received from our selected mentors and the WISE Accelerator management team over the last year has been phenomenal. The mentors on the program are leading figures in EdTech and business, and are fully committed to helping us to grow and succeed. 

“As a result of the WISE Accelerator, we were successful in raising seed funding, and were able to identify and appoint a key business advisor. We also had the opportunity to explore crucial international markets and receive advice of how to refine our international scale-up strategy.”

Nayla Fahed Zreik, Co-founder of Lebanese Alternative Learning, an NGO based in Lebanon and a member of the program’s 2017-18 cohort, said: “The WISE Accelerator is not only about accelerating your business - it’s about accelerating your mind.

“You will never think in the same way after a few sessions with your mentor. The WISE mentorship process will provide you with potential solutions tailored to your business."

The five 2018-19 WISE Accelerator initiatives are:

ScholarX

A social impact startup based in Nigeria, ScholarX enables African youth to access education through various education financing solutions, regardless of their socio-economic background. ScholarX offers a scholarship aggregator mobile/web app, which has over 10,000 local and foreign-targeted scholarships. It also provides a micro-scholarship crowdfunding platform called ‘the Village’ that connects local students with tuition funding sponsors worldwide.

Chatterbox

Based in the UK, Chatterbox is a language-tutoring platform created and delivered by refugees. Chatterbox finds, trains, and then contracts highly-skilled refugees to deliver language training to their clients. Chatterbox tackles the problem of unemployment amongst refugee populations, turning what would usually be considered a barrier to refugee employment - their native language - into an asset.

ImBlaze

An initiative of the Big Picture Company, a non-governmental organization based in the United States, ImBlaze is an online management platform that enables educators and students to easily and efficiently manage out-of-school internship experiences, to support real-world, personalized learning. It supports students to look for an internship, and once the internship starts, the educator in school and the mentor in the workplace accompany the student in the learning process.

SmartScience

A startup based in the US, SmartScience provides students with an online platform that facilitates learning in the sciences. The company developed a technology that allows students to test a hypothesis by measuring results on videos of real-world experiments. SmartScience offers over 300 lessons in the sciences, and every lesson is designed with the goal of fostering the learning of the experimentation method among students.

Uptale

Uptale is a French startup that offers a software-as-a-service platform to enable creators to imagine, create, publish, and monitor immersive learning experiences using Virtual Reality (VR) and Augmented Reality (AR) technology. Uptale allows anyone - without any technical background or prior training - to create gamified interactive VR and AR learning content and publish it using the Uptale platform.

Find out more about these initiatives at: https://www.wise-qatar.org/wise-accelerator

Background Information

Qatar Foundation

Qatar Foundation (QF) is a non-profit organization made up of more than 50 entities working in education, research, and community development.

Our unique ecosystem—supported by partnerships with leading international institutions—is built on initiatives that address our most pressing challenges, create global opportunities, and empower people to shape our present and future.

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