The Baker Institute for Entrepreneurship, Creativity, and Innovation recognized and awarded the top entrepreneurial talent at Lehigh University for the 2020-2021 academic year. All award winners are listed below and a pdf of these awards can be found here. Read more about these events and watch the recording of Celebrate, held April 21st, which featured a fireside chat with Farrington Award winner Paul Martino '95. 

2020-2021 Awards


The Joan F. and John M. Thalheimer '55 Grand Prize of $5,000 featured three finalists who had projects that progressed the furthest during the 2020-2021 academic year - pitching, winning and advancing through the Baker Institute's EUREKA! monthly pitch events. They pitched and won at Stage 3, where their ideas have been prototyped and have clear externally validated rationale, both technically and financially.


The three finalists teams and their projects were:


  • Sareena Karim '22 and Foli-Q, custom hair products that are unique to each user.

  • Brian Quispe '20 '22G and Graham Patterson '20 and Ocutrap, making animal trap monitoring, managing, and control easier than ever.

  • Michael Rich '23 and Streamlined, using adjustable software templates to provide small businesses with affordable, semi-customizable software.


The Joan F. and John M. Thalheimer '55 Grand Prize was awarded to Brian Quispe '20 '22G and Graham Patterson '20 for Ocutrap.


The John F. and Joan Thalheimer '55 Award for Student Achievement, recognizing the project that earned the most resources during the year, was awarded to Michael Rich '23 and Streamlined. 


The Michael Levin '87 Advanced Technology Award, given to an engineering student developing new technologies, was awarded to Sareena Karim '22 and Foli-Q.


The People's Choice Award was voted on by the attendees of the April 14th Innovate event and was awarded to two students based on a 90 second pitch for their projects:

  • Emma Kwasnoski '20 '21G and Advocan, reimagining the pelvic exam experience.

  • Justin Gelwicks '23 and WoodGoods Lacrosse, specializing in making personalized, durable wooden lacrosse shafts.


The Farrington Award for Outstanding Commitment to Entrepreneurship at Lehigh is given in the name of Lehigh University's 12th president Gregory Farrington, a champion for entrepreneurship education and presented annually to an individual whose efforts help Lehigh make strides in entrepreneurship education. 

2020 Winner:

  • Paul Martino '95, Co-Founder and General Partner, Bullpen Capital


The RK Laros Foundation Endowed Prize for Entrepreneurship, Creativity & Innovation is given to recognize students who have participated in Baker Institute for Entrepreneurship, Creativity & Innovation programs and demonstrate entrepreneurial spirit. 

  • Steven Escobar-Mendez '22

  • Sareen Karim '22

  • Sahib Saini '22


The Donald E. Flinchbaugh Memorial Endowed Scholarship is given to a rising senior with a technical degree that best exhibits potential and interest in entrepreneurship 

  • Dave Jha '22


The John B. Ochs Teaching Award by the Baker Institute for Entrepreneurship, Creativity and Innovation is given to recognize and reward faculty at the front end of their careers who have taken initiative and risks in their teaching by embracing entrepreneurship and/or entrepreneurial mindset learning. 

  • Dr. Kristi Morin, Assistant Professor of Special Education


The Davis Projects for Peace is an invitation to undergraduates at the American colleges and universities in the Davis United World College Scholars Program to design grassroots projects that they will implement during the summer. 

  • "A Neglected Disease: Sickle Cell Diagnostic Test Strip" (2020 Winner)

    • Advisor: Prof. Xuanhong Cheng

    • Dream Intarachumnum '22

    • Maria Lancia '21

    • Tiffany Pang '22

    • Thomas Perillo '22

  • "Diagnosing Autism in Africa" (2021)

    • Advisor: Prof. Kristi Morin

    • Kathleen Bauer '25

    • Alyssa Blasko '25

    • Kelsey Johnson '22

    • Ted Renz '22

    • Sine Zungu '22

  • "Promoting Peace: Empowering Ugandan Youth through Education and Sports" (2021)

    • Advisor: Prof. Kelly Austin

    • Chae Eun Kim '22

    • Jessica Galarza '22

The John Ochs Faculty Achievement Award in Recognition of Curriculum and Program Innovation and Building the Entrepreneurial Ecosystem at Lehigh is given when warranted to highlight exceptional commitment to entrepreneurship achievement. This award was first given by President Alice Gast to John Ochs in 2014 and she proclaimed it would be named for him.This is only the second time the award will be conferred.


The Baker Institute also debuted a new program, the Baker Institute Fellowship. Composed of upperclass students who have shown commitment to and excellence in entrepreneurship through their participation in Baker Institute programs, this initiative will provide opportunities for professional development, personal growth, and strengthening the Lehigh entrepreneurial community. 

The inaugural class of Baker Fellows includes:

  • Dom Allen '20

  • Hua Bui '21

  • Will Cioffi '21

  • Cameron Cirpriano '21

  • Jack Cunningham '21

  • Kiara Damon '21

  • Nazr El-Scar '21

  • Eve Freed '21

  • Scott Gruninger '20

  • Devon Jackson '21

  • Emma Kwasnoski '20 '21G

  • Max Machado '22

  • Annie Norris '22

  • Nick Owens '22

  • Will Peracchio '21

  • Eliza Wastcoat '19

  • Alex Woods '21