Ladies First Founders is the Dingman Center’s one-credit Spring semester course for female and non-binary entrepreneurs working on businesses at the University of Maryland. Taught by Sara Herald, champion of our Ladies First Initiative, the course helps students build soft-skills for overcoming gender biases in entrepreneurship. The cohort learns about entrepreneurship, grows their business ideas, and supports each other’s entrepreneurial journeys. The syllabus includes a blend of skill-building workshops and networking events. Topics include the how to’s of networking and mentorship, finding balance as a founder/student/human, overcoming imposter syndrome, startup pitching and body language, funding and how to get it, and more.

Read on to learn more about this cohort’s exciting student founders and their businesses!

Cloud Closet – Vera Andreeva ’22
The Cloud Closet is designed to significantly decrease the amount of time it takes to get dressed. It simultaneously increases the number of outfits through recommendations while keeping your closet the same size. Based on your style, it will recommend items that will keep you feeling stylish and on-trend.

Cosmicals Cards – Dani Feng ’23
Cosmicals Cardsis a line of humorous cartoon space-themed greetings cards.

Degree – Lahari Tammera ’23
Degree will be an Indian and French fusion cafe with traditional Indian recipes reimagined as different concepts. Tammera plans for the cafe to be a social enterprise with some of the profits either being donated to different causes or using the profits for community building in the local area surrounding the cafe.

F3S Professional Bridge – Ed-love Lesley Aidoo ’21
F3S Professional Bridge is a social venture that provides visa and international college students with professional development such as externships, internships, part-time and full-time positions.

Heart2Starr – Ileana Y. Lozano ’22
Since 2013, writer and poet Ileana Lozano has shared her thoughts, poetry, and artwork with her community under the social media handle @Heart2Starr.

Heed – Anna Kaplan ’21
Heed is a platform that provides self-care ideas and inspiration for women in their 20’s.

Hi Monkey Co. – Yasmin Molkara ’22
Hi Monkey Co. is devoted to helping others hone their unique style and promoting sustainable shopping through our favorite handpicked second-hand pieces.

Lace Bar – Maliha Bukhari ‘22

Pop Shop – Ananya Ramkumar ’21
Pop shop aims to connect college students with restaurants and retailers through pop-up shop experiences. Our mission is to allow students to dine and shop from the convenience of their campus by converting unused classrooms and trailers into restaurants and stores.

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