Emerging company School Climate Solutions will represent Puerto Rico in the semifinal round of the InnovateHER challenge sponsored by the U.S. Small Business Administration, it was announced Wednesday.
The company, founded and directed by psychologists Joy Lynn Suárez and Maribel González, was the winner in a local round held as part of the “Women Tech Over” event held during the recent celebration of Global Entrepreneurship Week.
School Climate Solutions is a bilingual technological platform through which parents, teachers and students have instant access to instructional materials to improve the school climate, when needed.
Suárez, who presented the project, said while resources are directed at guiding parents and teachers on topics such as bullying, mental health and socio-emotional skills, they come from different print and digital sources that are not easily accessible. The platform developed by the Puerto Rican professionals gathers relevant information in one place, and also makes it available to students.
At present, School Climate Solutions focuses its strategy on school districts, and already has a customer in California, which was drawn to the proposal for its English and Spanish content.
Through the InnovateHER challenge, the SBA seeks to recognize innovative companies that have a measurable impact on the lives of women and their families, and have the potential to market and fill a need in the market.
For a high percent of women heads of households in Puerto Rico and the United States, School Climate Solutions is a tool to empower and support women in parenting, either to identify patterns of harassment or other situations in the school environment, and can take action to correct it, Suárez said.
“We’re very excited to represent Puerto Rico in this entrepreneurial challenge,” said Suárez.
Other enterprises also presented their concepts During the InnovateHER round held in Puerto Rico, namely Global Education Exchange Opportunities, Agrochic, DAS Legal Services; and I travel alone.
During the Women Tech Over event, organized jointly by the Puerto Rico Women in Startups group and Pilot Startups Labs, the scholarship for women interested in applying for the Founders Institute business acceleration program — whose next cycle begins in January 2016 — he was also presented.
“We want to inspire more women to use technology tools to initiate and take their business to the next level,” said Sofia Stolberg, co-founder and co-director of Pilot Labs Founders Institute in Puerto Rico.
Meanwhile, Marie Custodio, cofounder of Puerto Rico Women in Startups, reiterated that “countries and companies with greater participation of women in leadership have better economic results,” so she urged support for initiatives that promote this kind of integration.