Study Buddies: Freshman creates app aimed at socializing studying

Nick Smith

A new way to study in the age of smartphones



The sight of students studying alone may be a thing of the past if freshman Nick Smith has anything to say about it.

Smith is creating an app called Study Buddy that allows students to study with other classmates who have similar habits. After asking about various personality and schedule information, the app places users into study groups.

“You get to study with somebody who is relatable to you,” Smith said.        

Smith came up with the idea to combine his interest in entrepreneurship with his desire for people to interact socially.       

“I really care about people interacting with each other,” he said. “I just want to better people’s lives through apps.”  

During his first semester of classes, Smith noticed many students not studying with other people from their classes.

“I’m always looking for apps to improve our lives,” he said. “And studying is an everyday thing around the world, so I just wanted to make something out of that so it could be useful.”   

Smith said he hopes to propose the app to university staff this fall.  

Nick Smith pullquoteWhen Smith sought advice from faculty members, business administration professor Shelly Gardner  said even though the app is in the “infant stages,” she can already see its potentional.

“It is such a good idea for students to be able to communicate with people from their class,” Gardner said. “As a professor, I’ve recommended that the school adopt Study Buddy and put some marketing efforts behind it so that students can know about it.”   

As a former marketing lender, Gardner said she enjoys discussing potential business ideas with students.

“This has to have been done before,” Gardner said when she first heard of the idea.

But after conducting her own research, she found that no app or patent ideas similar to Study Buddy existed.

Gardner was just one of many contacts Smith proposed the idea to. Looking for ways to branch out, he also reached out to professors through other media sources.

“I made a video explaining the app and I sent it to different professors,” he said. “They shared encouraging words, saying they would use it.”

This research helped Smith gain a better understanding of the app’s potential audience.

In addition to faculty, Smith enlisted a team of students to get Study Buddy up and connecting.

While looking for a web designer for Study Buddy’s website, senior computer science major Roberto Luces was recommended to Smith.

“I thought it was a really good idea, [helping] connect students to other students who are in a similar academic route, so they can help each other out,” Luces said.

Luces also liked that there is currently nothing like Study Buddy on the market.

“There’s not really an app that helps you connect to people on an academic level,” he said.

In addition to organizing a student team to work on the app, Smith also conducted some research on his own.

Smith is hoping to have the Study Buddy prototype ready to test by the end of March, and if all goes well, he wants to launch the app this fall.


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