Inspiration struck during a course called “Starting a New Venture” with Assoc. Prof. Yi Yang
in the Manning School of Business
. Joel Dabady and classmate Keegan LaPierre, a junior, needed to create a feasibility statement for a proposed company. Looking at an external hard drive that LaPierre had taped to his laptop, the students suddenly imagined a laptop case with a built-in external battery. And with that, their company Laptech was born.
“It’s for people who are on the go all the time and don’t have time to sit in one place to charge their device,” says Dabady, who pitched Laptech with LaPierre in the Francis College of Engineering’s DifferenceMaker
Prototyping Competition last fall. They didn’t win, but the feedback they received from judges motivated them to keep working.
Dabady, a Foxboro native who transferred to UMass Lowell from Bridgewater State his sophomore year, says the engineering and business resources available at UML have been invaluable.
“Imagine if you were a person outside the university trying to figure this out,” he says. “This would probably end up in a drawer somewhere. You have to take advantage of it while you’re here.”
Although he’s graduating, Dabady is going to keep working with LaPierre on Laptech, which they plan to enter in DifferenceMaker again next year.
“I’ve always wanted to create my own business,” Dabady says. “I’m glad I met someone here with a similar train of thought.”