Be Your Own Boss
Entering senior year of college usually triggers two opposite feelings: the excitement of being a big man on campus and having one last year of freedom, and the fear of facing the reality of getting a job after graduation.
Unfortunately, the latter feeling tends to override the former and take away from what many claim is the best year of college. Seniors tend to find that despite their qualifications, today’s economy often precludes them from getting the job that they want. Some seniors, however, have found that instead of waiting for the right opportunity to knock, they can create their own opportunity.
Kevin Hubschmann and Henry Schaffer are two Georgetown seniors who have refused to get caught up in the anxious job search. The two decided to stray away from the finance path of most of their friends and relished the thought of the advantages of owning their own company. Hubschmann said that, “We felt that starting our own company gave us the opportunity to learn more about business than any internship or first year job could.”
It was not long before they came up with their business plan: UBICARD, which offers a card installed with a GPS tracking device that can locate a wallet if lost or stolen. The name of the company is derived from the Spanish verb, “ubicar” meaning “to locate.”
Enthusiastic about their idea, Hubschmann and Schaffer entered into Georgetown’s Rocket Pitch, in which they gave a two-minute speech regarding their company in front of D.C. entrepreneurs, students, and over 30 judges.
After pitching their idea for the first time, Hubschmann and Schaffer placed third amongst twenty contestants and were also given the People’s Choice Award, which is voted on by audience members.
The competition victory was a confidence booster and the advice and feedback that they received from the audience reassured them of the demand for their product. Hubschmann said that, “The competition gave us the confidence to believe in our product because so many others did, too.”
Since the competition, Hubschmann and Schaffer have made significant progress in their launch of UBICARD. With the help of Hubschmann’s cousin, Alex Mault, they have been able to develop the complex technology for the card.
At the age of 15, Mault founded FindMyI.org, the original Find My iPhone application, which generated 1.5 million users. Hubschmann and Schaffer made Mault a partner in addition to Hubschmann’s brother, Brian Hubschmann, who will serve as their strategic planner and marketing analyst.
To continue the growth of their company, Hubschmann and Schaffer participated in Georgetown’s Hoya Challenge, another entrepreneurial competition. After they reached the semi-finals, they were once again awarded the People’s Choice Award.
Hubschmann and Schaffer are now navigating the waters of capital raising and trying to get their company off the ground with the right investors. They are very confident in the success of UBICARD and are anxiously anticipating for their company to take off after coming such a long way.
So while Hubschmann and Schaffer may seem like a one of a kind duo, keep in mind that they are just normal students, who have learned how to create their own opportunities. When school becomes overwhelming, and the dreaded job search comes to mind, remember that with a little innovation and confidence, you can create more and different options to explore as well and enjoy the excitement of senior year.