Family Dinner Recap: Nicole Cuervo, Founder & CEO at Springrose

Event Recaps
By: Elizabeth Savin
Nov 2, 2023
Pictured: Nicole speaking to Residents at Family Dinner

On Wednesday, October 11th, Residents of The Garage had the opportunity to gather together for their weekly Family Dinner to hear from Nicole Curevo (Kellogg ‘22, McCormick ‘22), founder and CEO of Springrose. Springrose creates adaptive, easy-on bras for women with arthritis, MS, shoulder injuries, or other movement-limiting conditions. During her time as a student at Kellogg, Nicole was an active member of The Garage, participating in both the Residency and Propel programs.

Springrose was inspired by Nicole’s grandmother, Rose. “Despite living with chronic pain, my grandmother didn’t let it stop her from living her life. Still, I noticed how her bras exacerbated her pain and made it challenging to get dressed. When I tried to buy her an adaptive bra, the options were unattractive, size-limited, and not functional. Thus, I began my journey to create a bra that wouldn’t compromise on fashion or function, so women everywhere could live life to their fullest,” shared Nicole.

During her talk, Nicole described a number of lessons she had learned with the student founders. For founders just starting out on their journey, these points included:

  • Hook them early. Be able to clearly tell people the problem you’re solving.
  • Customer first. Always involve the consumer in everything you do.
  • Sharing opens doors. Tell everyone about your idea, so they can help you. Don’t keep it a secret because you’re afraid someone else will do it first.
  • Talk to experts. They will guide you and help you avoid mistakes.

It is crucial for the founders of new companies to be able to explain their idea and the pain point their solving in a clear and concise way to anyone who will listen. Without this, it will be more difficult to rally people around them to support and champion them. Nicole made sure to express that you cannot launch a product alone. Founders need to talk to as many people as possible, so they can receive valuable feedback and information that will catapult their idea to the next level. Without others’ input, your product will not be the best that it can be.

For founders a bit further in their journey, Nicole shared:

  • Dream big, but start small. Create a grand vision but focus on the first steps.
  • Story wins. Tell a clear, easy-to-follow narrative
  • Niche is queen. If you’re targeting everybody, you’re targeting nobody.
  • Do your research. Back up your insights with qualitative and quantitative data.

As founders work to raise money, it is critical that they not only report on numbers and markets, but also deeply understand their customer. In order to garner support, it is crucial to create a story and allow others to feel as if they fully understand and can buy into the problem you are working to solve.

Finally, Nicole shared advice for everyone, no matter how far along in their entrepreneurial path:

  • Make Founder friends. Entrepreneurship can be lonely, especially as a solo founder and fellow founders will usually have the best advice and resource recommendations.
  • Invest in you. Protect your time, your mind, and your relationships. Your startup will be there tomorrow and you need to be in the best place to drive it forward.
  • You're not a robot. Don't buy into myths of what a founder should do or be like. Be yourself and don’t be afraid to rely on others.

The Residents were excited to put Nicole’s advice into action and left Family Dinner with a renewed sense of purpose and a continued desire to connect with the student founders around them.

About the Author

Elizabeth Savin ’25 is a Manufacturing and Design Engineering major from Wilmette, IL. She is a student aide at The Garage and was part of the Winter 2022 Propel cohort. She is excited to begin her own venture while learning more about entrepreneurship.