Menlo College 2020 Entrepreneurship Award Winner Announced

ATHERTON — Sambhab Thapaliya ‘21 has won the inaugural Entrepreneurship and Innovation Award at Menlo College. Thapaliya edged out a field of young start-up founders to secure this new honor — made possible by a generous contribution from Dr. Annika Steiber, Director of the Entrepreneurship and Innovation Program at Menlo College and her husband Rikard Steiber, Global Marketing Director for Mobile & Social Advertising at Google. Thapaliya was announced as the very first recipient at a virtual ceremony, which was based on the annual Menlo College spring tradition of Honors Convocation.

The Entrepreneurship and Innovation Award is a merit-based distinction, which recognizes an entrepreneurial team or individual who possesses the drive, managerial skills and leadership traits to inspire others to support their mission. Students who earn this award must create a positive impact on the local community, the country, or the world by producing practical, marketable, and profitable solutions or improvements for real life problems and shortcomings.

Thapaliya secured the award through his ability to leverage connections in Silicon Valley and his home country of Nepal. A founder of several startups, Thapaliya currently serves as founder and CEO of ASMI, a company with the potential to transform the global video industry. ASMI has secured funding from Dorm Room Fund, a $3 million American venture capital firm focused on investments in student-run startups.

The award carries a one time scholarship of $2,000, and the opportunity to take advantage of ten mentorship hours and two lunches with influential members of Menlo’s Entrepreneurship Advisory Council or other leaders in the Silicon Valley ecosystem.

The Menlo College Advisory Board for the Entrepreneurship and Innovation Program evaluates nominees and selects each year’s award recipient based on a demonstration of entrepreneurial ingenuity and practicality as well as recommendations from the faculty award committee. This year’s Advisory Board was comprised of Adrian Otto of Google, Denise Persson of Snowflake, Mukul Agarwal of BootUp Ventures, Tom Byers of Stanford University, Maxwell Barnes of Brand Capital, Christian Wiklund of UnitQ, Galina Fedorova of the Gooddler Foundation, Eric Malis of Lincode Labs, Kristopher Riley of PayStand, and Ethan Moengchaisong of Menlo College.

Congratulations to Sambhab Thapaliya on his hard work and innovation. Menlo College acknowledges and extends a warm thank you to the Steiber family and the Advisory Board for the Entrepreneurship and Innovation program for their ongoing contributions toward innovation and ingenuity in Menlo’s business management curriculum and their continued support to ignite potential in Menlo College students. Their ongoing efforts have yielded immense opportunities for Menlo students who are driving the future of management with the guidance of these faculty experts and community leaders.

Founded in 1927, Menlo College is a small private four-year college with a mission to ignite potential and educate students to make meaningful contributions in the innovation economy. A residential college in the heart of Silicon Valley, Menlo College offers degrees in business and psychology. Our students come from all over the world to learn leadership, critical thinking, creativity, team building, communication and the science of behavior. We take advantage of the strong innovative community around us. Students are required to take an internship at one of the many companies and incubators with which we have partnerships. We are proud of our intimate and engaged student community, fueled by our spirited and competitive athletics program. More information about Menlo College can be found at