Archive for college

Convenient Store At Your Door

Yakir Gola and Rafael Ilishayev launched goPuff when they were only sophomores at Drexel University in 2013. GoPuff is your convenient store on wheels, bringing over 3,000 items ranging from snacks and drinks to necessities and electronics – straight to your front door in 30 minutes or less. The idea came to them as car-less freshmen roommates constantly asking for rides to get basic necessities or cigarettes. There were apps for full-blown grocery shopping or gourmet food, but what about just a plain old convenient store run? – and goPuff was born.

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Before they had even fully launched, they were already getting orders from fellow college students and residents of Philadelphia. At first, the roommates worked 17-18 hour shifts with their (new) cars to deliver the snacks and goodies, but with time came employees and they now have dozens of drivers in twelve different cities across the US.Image result for gopuff

Gola and Ilishayev don’t see other food delivery services as their competitors – they see the brick and mortar convenient stores as their primary competition. Competition is a loose term however – in 2014, they already had 25,000 customers in Philadelphia alone just a year after launch.

While it’s unfortunate that their services don’t extend to Grove City, they are constantly expanding and setting up camp in more major cities across America. So the next time you’re in a big city with a hankering for Ben & Jerry’s, goPuff’s got your back.

Airbnb

Once upon a time, on a cool October night in San Francisco a pair of roommates by the names of Brian Chesky and Joe Gebbia were just too broke to pay rent on their apartment. They had to get money and get it fast so what did they do? Three air mattresses later and they had an Airbed and Breakfast for people who were attending a conference nearby and didn’t have a hotel room because all of the hotels were full. The pair were then able to get paid by renting said air mattresses and thus were able to pay rent. The end…or maybe not. Why not use this ingenious idea on a bigger scale? That’s exactly what Chesky thought. A few months later Airbnb was started. Airbnb is a trusted community marketplace in which people can rent out their spaces to travelers for both a cheaper price and a more authentic experience. This clever business gives college students and younger families the ability to travel cheaper and better and also allows homeowners to make extra money even while they are away from their homes. Airbnb now connects people to over 34,000 cities, 191 countries, and even 1,400 different castles. So how about we take a trip? Maybe to a castle?

Did Someone Say Scholarships?

In the big bad world of college searching and funding every student will ask the question “how much?” This question almost always refers to both how much it actually is to go to a school and how much scholarship said school will allot them. However, most students do not know about outside-of-school funding, whether it be state or private funding. The reason being is because of the hassle of the applications for said other scholarships and thus students leave a great asset and well of wealth to the wayside. But now there is a brilliant App/Website designed by a student to help students with their funding needs. Scholly is the brilliant and much needed brainchild of Christopher Gray. Being a low-income student himself, Gray searched for months during his latter years of high school applying for various scholarships until he had racked up enough cash to cover all college fees and then some. The process he went through however, was not an easy one nor a quick one. Thus, Scholly was born. Designed to easily connect students to private scholarships, Gray and his co-founders Nick Pirollo and Bryson Alief came up with an 8 parameter algorithm for easy scholarship connections. Even though it is practically a brand new company, Scholly has helped give out over $20,000,000 to 600,000 users since early 2015. From Chris Gray and me to my fellow broke classmates who are required to write comments; you’re welcome.

Life is Good

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The Life is Good Company was founded in 1994 by Bert and John Jacobs. They started by designing and selling t-shirts out of their van in the streets of Boston.

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Jake, the iconic stick figure, was created in the same year the company started. Jake was the beginning of Life is Good. The two brothers printed shirts of Jake and found that they were selling like a wildfire.

Their mission is to “spread the power of optimism”

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Their story: https://www.lifeisgood.com/our-story.html

College Hunks Hauling Junk

College Hunks Hauling Junk is the genius brainchild of Nick Friedman, an American Entrepreneur, dedicated to helping both people that need a hunk and hunks that need people. With his childhood friend Omar Soliman, Friedman built the company from the ground up. They first started with one van and a few strong buddies to make some extra cash in the summers between semesters. A few years after their college years they decided it was time to go all out and make College Hunks Moving Co. a legit thing. Freidman and Soliman put countless hours, nights, and weekends into organizing licensing regulations, figuring costs, and finding the necessities such as vans, uniforms, logo brandings, and most importantly; hunks. They first started hiring several college buddies and then hired buddies of buddies and finally branched out to all kinds of hunks. Football players, basketball players, trackletes, swimmers, and even mechies all started finding this awesome summer job geared towards college kids to help not only them out with their financial situation, but to also help their community with heavy lifting that would be more difficult for both the older and younger generations. The company itself has grossed billions in the past decade and has made Friedman famous in the Entrepreneurial world. Friedman has been featured in the Top 30 Entrepreneurs under 30 by INC Magazine along with iconic figures like Mark Zuckerberg. Today the company continues to grow across the nation; spreading to smaller towns and larger cities to get junk out and get good into the community by uniting its youth to needs.

 

Feeling just Fine

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In 2012, as a freshman at the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School, Daniel Fine started selling foldable sunglasses out of his dorm room. After gaining interested investors, “Glass-U” grew into a remarkable product that launched at the 2013 Rose Bowl and was the official sunglasses provider for the FIFA World Cup. The design of fully foldable sunglasses attracted huge interest, and Daniel Fine’s company rebranded as “NEU” with their expansion.

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NEU is only one of Daniel Fine’s success stories. Daniel Fine has started four companies – Team Brotherly Love, which funds research to find a cure for juvenile diabetes; Match Tutors, which matches tutors with students in Boston; Dosed, a new way to accurately track insulin; and Glass-U, now NEU.

Daniel Fine has been named one of the top 5 young entrepreneurs by Entrepreneurs Organization, was on Forbes’ 2016 30 under 30 list, and was one of TIME Magazine’s Top 25 International Leaders of Tomorrow. He has received numerous awards from both the Bush administration and the Obama administration, and in 2014 was nominated as one of the top 30 student entrepreneurs in the world.

He has a heart for diabetes research because of his diabetic brother, and is very philanthropic in that area, including the creation of a research foundation. Daniel Fine graduated just last year, but shows no signs of stopping his innovation. Read more about him here.

Scholarships Made Easy

As a college student, I know how expensive college is. I also know how hard it is to find scholarships that fit my needs. Christopher Gray saw this problem too as he grew up in a single parent household and had little to no means to go to college.

When Chris was in high school, he sifted through thousands of scholarships, and with a lot of hard work, he won $1.3 million in scholarships. As his own journey was very hard, Chris wanted to make it easier for other students. So Chris founded Scholly. Scholly is an app that helps high school seniors, current undergraduate students, or graduate students find scholarship money. It uses a patented scholarship-matching platform that gives you a targeted list that actually meets your needs and qualifications.

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Scholly believes that everyone should be able to afford access to a quality education, regardless of who they are, where they’re from, or what they have. It is only $2.99, so it is cheap and accessible.

After Scholly was featured on Shark Tank, it became the #1 overall app in both the iOS App Store and the Google Play Store for over 3 weeks. In addition, the app has won numerous awards and Chris Gray has also won awards for his company.

Through all this success, Scholly is still dedicated to connecting students to over $50 million in scholarships so they can go to the colleges of their dreams. The company continually tries to improve and strengthen their company so they can go on to help more students reach their full potential.

Aaron Gotwalt

– Penn State University’s Alumni Achievement Awards Dinner, 2015

 

Aaron Gotwalt is an Entrepreneur in San Francisco, California who grew up in Lititz, PA. He is the Co-Founder, CTO, and occasional software engineer at Projector. He Previously founded CoTweet (acquired in 2011 by ExactTarget), and graduated from Schreyer Honors College in 2004.

 

Schreyer’s news

http://news.psu.edu/story/370942/2015/09/22/academics/gotwalt%E2%80%99s-transformational-experiences-helped-launch-startup

AngelList

https://angel.co/gotwalt

His Blog

https://blog.projector.com/@gotwalt

 

Better Than a Lemonade Stand

When I was about 15 years old, the town of Falmouth in Cape Cod decided to replace an old train track with a biking trail that extended several miles to Woods Hole, a popular tourist hot spot. That summer I ventured from my family’s summer home to see what the new bike trail had to offer in places I had never seen due to overgrown weeds – and that was how I met Patrick. Patrick was only 14, yet already had a summer business that was raking in hundreds annually to go toward his future college tuition.

Patrick’s parents had made it clear at a young age that if he wanted to go to college, he was going to have to start saving early because they couldn’t afford the debt. His home was on an average Falmouth road – quiet and lazy, yet also bustling in the summer with people biking or walking to the beach. At the age of 12, he borrowed $1,000 to purchase a high quality shaved ice making machine and flavoring, and set up a table at the side of the road to sell shaved ice to the passerbys. It didn’t take long for the revenue to start flowing like water, and he gained regular customers who would specifically travel down his road to purchase his shaved ice. When Falmouth ripped out the railroad in favor of the trail, his business exploded. By the time I met him, his table had become a semi-permanent booth that boasted the shaved ice machine, dozens of flavors, fresh squeezed lemonade, other refreshments like Gatorade and Sprite, and even had a shady section off to the side with benches and tables. The bike trail brought a boom of tourists and natives from other towns, and he had already saved several thousand dollars when I first met him.

One thing I truly admired was his commitment to his original goal of saving the money for his future tuition. He was already a levelheaded businessman at the young age of 14, and the vast majority of his revenue went straight into his savings instead of his pockets. It was brilliant for him to realize at age 12 that virtually no one sold shaved ice in our area and in the surrounding towns, and he was able to capitalize on that advantage very quickly before others caught on and did the same. While I haven’t seen Patrick in a few years, I am quite confident that his business is still there, improving, and thriving during the hot Cape Cod summers.

Scholly: Opportunity for All

How much would you sacrifice to have a college education? If you’re a college student, you have probably been there. Considering how you’re going to pay for college and what means to do so. Scholarships? Loans? Parents?

When Christopher Gray was a junior in high school, he realized his family would not have the means to send him to college, but he believed a college education was a necessity. He started to apply for scholarships. After a tedious 7 months, he accumulated over $1.3 million dollars in scholarships (including some entrepreneurial scholarships…hint hint). Gray described the process as a lot of unnecessary work, but now he was essentially an expert at the scholarship system. He knew something had to change. Something to make college students’ lives just a little easier. In 2015, Gray launched an app/website that creates an easier process to connect aspiring college students to scholarships.

Accompanied by his co-founders Nick Pirollo (26) and Bryson Alef (24), Christopher Gray (24) created Scholly.

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Scholly has generated over 600,000 users (which continues to grow) and is estimated to have facilitated $50 million in scholarships. Gray was also featured on Shark Tank which helped his idea get big.

I personally think the mission of Scholly is amazing, and though I haven’t used the app…I believe the testimony and experience of Christopher Gray is enough to support his idea. Gray’s college education paid off (quite literally)! He saw a problem: that being an outdated system in a technologically advanced world. It is encouraging to see how Gray took a personal struggle and turned it into a success, and I’m sure the college student community is very grateful for his work. Since Scholly was just so recently introduced, I am  certain the success will continue to grow.

Entrepreneur of the Year

For anyone who might be interested in scholarship opportunities, here’s a link to get you hooked up with a Scholly account.

RegisterForSchollyHere