DC: What is your name, major, and anticipated graduation year?
Rosario: Ian Rosario- Architecture & Spanish double-major, Class of 2022
DC: In two to three sentences, how would you describe your startup?
Rosario: Tiny Theatre is a mission-driven venture that helps elementary kids build social skills, confidence, & reading fluency through FUN, interactive, theatre activities. Unlike traditional activities used to help students in speech language therapy, Tiny Theatre’s creates printable activities that allow students to grow comfortable in social environments in a fun way.
DC: At what point did you know you wanted to create your own startup?
Rosario: I knew I’ve wanted to start my own business since high school. I love entrepreneurship because you can use creativity to solve a problem. During my freshman and sophomore year, I used to ideate startup ideas with my roommate in the dorm.
DC: What or who is your biggest influence for your startup?
Rosario: I think the biggest influence for my startup is seeing its impact on students. I love to see how students grow out of their shell into their God-given gifts and personality. Empowering students influences me to continue working on this startup.
DC: How have the effects of the pandemic changed your company’s focus or ideas?
Rosario: The pandemic has made me think about the accessibility of my product. Since everyone has a different comfort and ability to interact with others, the pandemic has shifted my focus to really think about the end user’s situation.
DC: What updates or significant accomplishments can you share with us about your company from the last six months?
Rosario: The last six months have resulted in a pivot of my company. I have spent a lot of time interviewing potential customers and understanding their specific needs and pain points. Based on these interviews, Tiny Theatre has pivoted from only focusing on literacy, to primarily helping solve the need to build social skills.
DC: What do you feel that you have achieved from participating in Terp Startup Accelerator this summer?
Rosario: I feel like I have come to understand my “why” for this venture. I deeply enjoy helping people communicate and creating safe spaces for them to express themselves. Through Tiny Theatre, I think I am equipping kids to feel safe & comfortable in social situations.
DC: If you could give advice to any aspiring entrepreneurs, what would it be?
Rosario: There is so much learning, customer discovery, and customer acquisition that you can do without spending a dollar. I would recommend spending time in the pre-launch phase to deeply hear from your future customers & understand their needs (this also saves yourself some money).
For more information about Tiny Theatre, please visit the website here.