Businesswire | April 27, 2023
Summer, the certified B Corp committed to addressing the national student debt crisis, announced that it has raised $6M in new capital, with $18M raised in funding to date. General Catalyst, QED Investors, Flourish Ventures, Greycroft, Story Ventures, Gaingels, Calm VC, Partnership Fund for NYC, Fenway Summer, BDMI, and Avidbank participated in the financing.
The company also announced it has surpassed $1 billion in total projected savings for borrowers, and it has hired Leigh Gross as Chief Revenue Officer to lead partnerships with recordkeepers and other financial institutions interested in Summer Secure, the company’s automated solution for SECURE 2.0 retirement matching.
Student loan debt in the United States now stands at $1.75 trillion, according to the Federal Reserve, exceeding credit card and auto debt. It is often the first meaningful debt that young people incur, and can lead to a domino effect on their financial life–making it harder to save for retirement or buy a home years after graduating. Summer works with leading financial institutions, employers, and unions to provide a high impact, comprehensive digital solution that helps individuals plan for college costs, reduce the burden of student loan debt, and optimize retirement savings. To date, the company has delivered more than $1 billion in total projected savings for borrowers across the United States, offering assistance on every leg of the personal finance journey.
“We’re thrilled to announce this new funding, especially at a time when the need for better college planning and student loan solutions has never been more acute,” said CEO and co-founder Will Sealy. “As student loan forgiveness hangs in the balance and payments are set to resume for the first time in years, we’re excited to share our solution with more people to enable them to unlock financial freedom.”
Summer’s funding comes at an exciting time for the business as it continues to expand partnerships with retirement recordkeepers and payroll providers on the heels of its partnership with Fidelity Investments in 2022. Due to the recent passage of the SECURE 2.0 Act, many institutions are turning to Summer to support their employer clients with student loan retirement matching, leveraging Summer’s digital API suite and its expertise with operationalizing complex student loan policies into high-adoption solutions.
In a recent survey, 91% of employees with student debt said they would save more money for retirement if their employer offered a student loan repayment program. By ensuring that an employee’s student loan payments count toward the retirement match provided by their employer, Summer’s workplace solution can relieve student loan borrowers from having to make an impossible decision between paying down their debt or saving for retirement.
Summer was founded in 2017 by Sealy, a former Policy Analyst and Assistant to Sen. Elizabeth Warren and a veteran of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, Chief Product Officer Paul Joo, with previous experience at the U.S. Attorney’s Office and the Boston Consulting Group, and Chief Product Officer Vincent Tran, who previously led product at Pave and Orchard and was an investor at the Partnership Fund for NYC.
Summer’s recent partnership milestones include a student loan benefit launched with Intuit’s personal finance subsidiary, Credit Karma, and an expanded partnership with the American Federation of Teachers to support their 1.7 million teachers, government employees, and healthcare workers. Summer will use the new funding to expand the platform to help even more borrowers with a holistic approach to financial well-being.
Summer partners with financial institutions and employers to empower their populations to reduce education costs and student debt through proven technologies, policy expertise and human support. Founded in 2017 by industry experts, Summer’s mission is to alleviate student loan debt for 46 million borrowers by providing leading solutions for college cost planning, automated enrollment for loan assistance plans, tuition assistance, student loan contributions and retirement matching, and emergency savings. Summer is a certified B Corporation.
PRnewswire | May 02, 2023
Today, Stemuli—a gaming company at the intersection of AI, education, and workforce development—announced the merger of Infinity.careers and Oppti into Stemuli, with all companies focused on providing career navigation tools to empower students with the skills needed to thrive in the 21st century economy.
Stemuli, led by Taylor Shead, Founder & CEO, is a Black and woman-owned company with a mission to provide a pathway to an intellectually and economically fulfilling career for all. Naomi Thomas, Founder of infinity.careers, will take on the role of Head of Digital for Stemuli, while Khiry Kemp, Co-founder of Oppti, will serve as Head of Operations. The company announced the merger was made possible because the three founders met in Jobs for the Future's (JFF) Entrepreneur in Residence incubator, led by JFFLabs, JFF's innovation lab, which brings together talented and driven entrepreneurs to collaborate and solve real-world problems.
"Stemuli is a shining example of what can happen when we bring together and incubate talented and driven entrepreneurs to collaborate and catalyze new ways to support people facing systemic barriers to advancement," said Kristina Francis, executive director of JFFLabs, JFF's innovation lab. "We are thrilled to see the success of our program in action, and we look forward to seeing the impact this merger will have on the future of learning."
According to the National Bureau of Economic Research, access to capital is a major barrier for black entrepreneurs. Despite making up over 13% of the US population, Black-owned businesses only receive less than 1% of venture capital. The merger of Infinity.careers and Oppti into Stemuli highlights the power of Black founders coming together in a way that hasn't been done before, and demonstrates their commitment to creating new opportunities in the edtech space.
"This merger marks an important milestone for both black entrepreneurs and the edtech industry as a whole," said Taylor Shead, Founder and CEO of Stemuli. "We are excited to join forces and bring our collective expertise to create a company that truly empowers students and addresses the needs of the education system. We believe that education is the key to unlocking opportunities and driving social and economic mobility, and we are committed to making that a reality for students across the country."
Stemuli is a Black and woman-owned gaming company at the intersection of AI, education, and workforce development.Stemuli is a Black and woman-owned gaming company at the intersection of AI, education, and workforce development. Stemuli connects students to meaningful career development experiences and maintains a portfolio of students’ every achievement, certification, and development milestones to help them showcase the to the marketplace and land the job of their dreams.
Businesswire | April 03, 2023
“We’re honored to be recognized by The EdTech Awards for our Unified Classroom® solution, which unites the critical teaching and learning tools that educators and students need in one place,” said Marcy Daniel, Chief Product Officer at PowerSchool. “We understand the needs of educators today and are proud to provide innovative solutions that support every student.”
PowerSchool was also recognized as a finalist in the following Cool Tool award categories:
• Administrative Solution for PowerSchool Unified Administration™
• Career Planning Solution for Naviance by PowerSchool
• Classroom Management Solution for Unified Classroom® • Curriculum and Instruction Solution for Unified Classroom®
• District Data Solution for PowerSchool Unified Insights™
• E-Learning, Blended, Flipped Solution or Remote Solution for Unified Classroom®
• Enrollment & Admissions Solution for PowerSchool Enrollment
• Higher Education Solution for PeopleAdmin’s Faculty Solutions
• New Product or Service (releases in 2020 or later) for Unified Classroom® and PeopleAdmin’s Course Evaluations
Celebrating its 13th year, the US-based program is the world’s largest recognition program for education technology, recognizing the biggest names in edtech – and those who soon will be. Featuring edtech’s best and brightest, the annual program shines a spotlight on cool tools, inspiring leaders and innovative trendsetters across the K-12, Higher Education, and Skills and Workforce sectors.
“A very big congratulations to all The EdTech Awards 2023 finalists and winners—and congratulations to all who endured the upheavals of the last few years only to come through stronger, more experienced, resilient, and resolute in laying out the future of learning,” said Victor Rivero, Editor-in-Chief of EdTech Digest. “To the innovators, leaders, and trendsetters of education technology, you are the way forward. Your future-focused mindset is welcomed, encouraged, and needed now more than ever—and we salute you!”
This year’s finalists and winners were narrowed from the larger field and judged based on various criteria, including pedagogical workability, efficacy and results, support, clarity, value, and potential.
PowerSchoolis the leading provider of cloud-based software for K-12 education in North America. Its mission is to power the education ecosystem with unified technology that helps educators and students realize their full potential, in their way. PowerSchool connects students, teachers, administrators, and parents, with the shared goal of improving student outcomes. From the office to the classroom to the home, it helps schools and districts efficiently manage state reporting and related compliance, special education, finance, human resources, talent, registration, attendance, funding, learning, instruction, grading, assessments and analytics in one unified platform. PowerSchool supports over 50 million students globally and more than 15,000 customers, including more than 90 of the top 100 districts by student enrollment in the United States, and sells solutions in more than 90 countries.
About Edtech Digest and The Edtech Awards
EdTech Digest, a leading source of cool tools, interviews, and trends showcasing the future of learning — annually honors the best and brightest people, products and groups working in edtech with The EdTech Awards. Cool Tool, Leadership, and Trendsetter honorees span the K-12, Higher Ed, and Skills & Workforce sectors.