Shayanne Wright — she LEFT and she conquered
Shayanne Wright. Since EIA, she has led her company through Women’s Startup Labs, an Accelerator Program in Silicon Valley with a less than 5% acceptance rate, has been working with their 1,700 current clients, and is raising their Pre-Seed Round.
Shayanne Wright is an International Business Student at Azusa Pacific University in Los Angeles, California. This past summer, she left to participate in the 3-week EIA Entrepreneurship Program in Lisbon, Portugal. Not only did her team become one of the top 10 startups in the program, she became the CEO of LEFT, a unique framework that is equipping student travel organizations with the technology they need. We had a little talk with this awesome woman.
First, we wanted to reflect on her time with us in Portugal. She immediately began bragging about her perfect team. In the best way of course. She says, “Our team initially found each other in Scoro before the program which was meant to be because as I shared my initial idea, I found four team members who all saw the potential and mission of the project. At first, it was a real success story as a team — we were all so different, but at the same time we all cared about each other so much. We were an all boys team with a female CEO, and at first, I was nervous, but my team members really respected me and allowed me to lead, and in many different ways, they led me! Our team really showed the power of bringing together a diverse group of people to accomplish something remarkable.”
Currently Managing 1,700 users and Raising Funds
LEFT got traction really early during the EIA program. LEFT acquired a request for a minimum of 1,200 users for their Private Beta in 2 weeks from universities and programs around the world. Since EIA, they have taken on additional clients which leaves Shayanne with the overseeing of over 1,700 users in these next few months. Once they have completed this round of Private Beta, LEFT will have been taken to over 35 countries! Watch LEFT’s EIA Top 10 Pitch 3 Minute Pitch here.
Opportunities as a Female Funder
After EIA, Shayanne and LEFT were accepted into an accelerator program in Silicon Valley called Women’s Startup Lab. With an acceptance rate lower than 5%, only 10 startups were chosen to take part in WSLab’s 12th Batch. Shayanne was the youngest founder among the batch, and explains how contrasting of an experience it in comparison to the EIA program. Yet thanks to the strong foundation of knowledge she received at EIA, she was well prepared for the Silicon Valley program. Since the programs Demo Day in September, LEFT is now raising a Pre-Seed Series to build out a team. They are currently working with new potential customers with universities such as University of San Diego and Santa Clara University in their pipeline, and managing their existing customer base. Watch LEFT’s Women Startup Lab Demo Day Pitch.
And the EIA family remains close! In fact, LEFT’s Marketing Mentor, PJ Leimgruber, is now currently on LEFT’s Advisory Board. Shayanne also has aspirations to work with the Arab Innovation Academy in January 2018 and potentially EIA next summer.
So what is LEFT?
Through her experience traveling with 6 different programs and study abroad opportunities since she was very young, Shayanne found that student travel organizations did not have the technological infrastructure to both mitigate the risk of travel and catalyze their programs.
This is why she created LEFT. In short, LEFT is equipping student travel organizations with the technology they need! They have 3 components:
- For Coordinators, LEFT’s Web App & Dashboard: Managing your travelers and programs made easy! From our Web-app, coordinators can seamlessly have users fill out forms, contact each other, and share valuable itinerary and emergency information. With our dashboard, faculty can track user engagement and monitor traveler interactions from start to finish.
- For Travelers & on the field staff, our Mobile App: Accessing your travelers is now a seamless process. With our mobile application, you can reach your travelers at all times. No wifi? No problem! Just turn on your offline mode and use your tools on the go. Not only do your travelers have a beautiful and simple interface for their program itinerary, but provide them with fun tools like Maps, Language Translator, and group chats!
- For all Programs, our Database: Say goodbye to file cabinets and endless Google Drive files! With our database, you can archive all of your program’s data and save it for next year. Simply build away with our searchable database, and tweak your new updates.
Why is it called LEFT?
Other than because it is a pun of Ms.Wright’s name, LEFT is called LEFT so that coordinators can see when each of their students has “left” for their trips. By their names, a bright green LEFT will light up for their duration of their programs.
The Mission: We believe travel can transform a person’s worldview. Travel enhances empathy, eradicates prejudice, and makes us resilient. We believe in empowering travel organizations to cultivate global citizens, and ultimately, bring life and longevity to their programs.
LEFT is raising funds and hiring in the Southern California area! Shayanne encourages anyone who is interested to reach out via email to firstname.lastname@example.org