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I stepped out of the train. People pushing and shoving, back and forth, loud noises echoing down the narrow walls into the abyss. Searching for a way to the street, I too pushed my way through the barrage of people searching for the streets above: New York, New York. Up the escalator I went, briefcase in hand, sport coat thrown over my shoulder. It was a hot summer day. As I stepped into the open air, the confined sound of people conversing in the subways below slowly faded and was replaced by the bustling sound of the city’s traffic.
How did I get here? My attention was immediately turned to the task at hand – catch a cab to Brooklyn for the meeting. As the cab pulled out into the heavy midtown traffic my mind began thinking again how had I arrived at this destination. Some time late last spring, classmate and business partner Marika Wei invited me to her home to discuss my employment with her family’s security camera manufacturing company (ILDVR). I remember arguing with my mother because she would not let me meet with the Weis until my homework was done.
Marika Wei and I had developed Flash-Me™, an interactive flash-card application for Apple’s iPhone and iPod Touch. The project, which was a resounding success, appeared prominently in numerous national publications. The Wei family, business owners themselves, were impressed with our endeavor and offered me a job working on the executive team for their company while they were in China for the summer.
The school year was over, exams complete and the summer allowed me to direct my efforts full time to ILDVR. I was in the office daily and our sales began to take off as a direct result of my increased marketing effort. During this time, I also attended Brown University for a summer program in economics. Everyday between classes I would have telephone calls with the office, conference calls with regional distributors, e-mails, internet sales literature to review, and new products to evaluate. So when the Weis asked me to travel to New York for the weekend to meet with a potential new distributor I jumped at the opportunity.
A first class train ticket from Providence, Rhode Island to New York City and I was on my way to Brooklyn to negotiate a critical deal with a future Northeast distributor. I am sure if my parents had known what I was up to that Saturday, they would have dropped dead. The Weis, on the other hand, did indeed drop dead when I reported to them that I secured the signed contract which granted them the exclusive rights to distribution for the Northeast United States. By the end of the following week the distributor had placed a six figure order with ILDVR. Back at Brown, I scrambled around the library for hours finalizing my economic final paper on the “Effects of Long Term Deficit Spending”.
The experiences of working in the business world of ILDVR and studying economics at Brown reinforced one another in a profound way, further whetting my appetite to continue expanding my knowledge.
But sadly, before I knew it, I was back in Miami preparing for my first day of my junior year. After experiencing such success in both the business and university context, it was something of a letdown to come back to high school. After discussing with my parents whether to continue and expand my hours with ILDVR or focus my energy on my junior year academics I arrived at the decision that it would be beneficial for me to focus on my school work, especially since I was considering early admission.
In the interim, I have satisfied my entrepreneurial passion by continuing to promote a corresponding project of Flash-Me™ dubbed SnapStudy™. The website would allow users to study right from their computer, expanding our potential market from iPhones and iPod Touches.
Now I feel anxious for the greater challenge college presents as I look forward to knew knowledge and new applications as well as pursuing my interest in business. I have finished my coursework early and have made the decision to sell SnapStudy™ in order to free my entrepreneurial imagination for new projects. I look forward to bringing my passion, invention, and motivation to the university level where I can network and further cultivate my ideas with fellow students and faculty, while simultaneously testing them in the world of business.
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