A team for an innovating app aimed at academic success visited The University Friday. The app, Stunited, connects students across collegiate campuses through educational networking.
To use the app, users create a profile that lists their strengths, needs, and academic requests. Once their profile is complete, Stunited sends them a card stack of other students’ profiles whose strengths match their needs. Students can barter their skills and knowledge or simply build an academic network through their connections.
John Rondi, a senior at Rowan University, is the creator of the app. Rondi and one of Stunited’s brand ambassadors, Brandon Davis, a senior at The University, teamed up to promote the app on campus. The two, along with a few others, managed a table outside The DeNaples Center Friday. They asked visitors to download Stunited for a free t-shirt or cardholder, along with other giveaways.
Rondi developed the idea for the app from personal experience during his sophomore year at Rowan. While working late at night on a paper that he knew he couldn’t complete on his own, he began to barter with a nearby floor-mate.
“It was too late to call a teacher or tutor and I couldn’t find the help online. But, I remembered my friend across the hall was struggling with her homework as well,” Rondi said.
Rondi then contacted his floor-mate and offered a proposition: he would help with her math homework if she revised his essay. The agreement was enjoyable on both ends, and they immediately began their bartering session. That’s when Rondi’s idea first sparked.
“The bartering of skill-sets and information exchange gave me the idea of a platform for students to connect and match based on their academic strengths and needs,” he said.
Rondi reached out to friends and family about his idea. They all reacted with positive feedback and encouragement, which further motivated him to pursue app development.
“As soon as I told my friends the idea, I was shocked at how much they believed in it,” Rondi said. “That night, I sat on the phone for hours discussing different ways to turn this into a reality, and I knew I had to commit to it.”
Rondi’s vision and idea led him to win first place at Rowan University’s 2017 Business Model Competition during his Junior year. He received $4,000 in cash and other business-related prizes that aided Stunited’s launch and development.
Stunited was launched in August and has been updated in the app store three times since then. It’s been slightly over a month since Stunited’s release, but Rondi envisions a bright future for the app and his team.
“I plan on Stunited being in the hands of every college student in America,” Rondi said. “The ins and outs of the app may change overtime, but my overall vision and goal will stay the same.”