Innovative Idea Competition grand prize goes to ‘microgiving’ site for bill support

November 9, 2011 //
Temple School of Communications and Theater Interim Dean Thomas Jacobson (left) stands with 2011 Innovative Idea Competition grand prize winner Jazmin Butler and Fox School of Business Vice Dean Rajan Chandran.

Some people may ask themselves, how do I think of the next big idea? Most of the times we are all trying to think outside the box about how one would go about creating the next iPod or the next But sometimes the answers to the next great and unique business plans are finding solutions to the everyday problems that we face within our own lives. That is exactly what Jazmin Butler did. The problem she was facing is a problem all students face, being a poor college student. In this case she had her father helping her out by paying some bills for her, but even though that may sound simple on paper, she discovered that it was quite difficult trying to coordinate incoming and outgoing money. Her problem led to a thought process of an idea that won her the grand prize and this year’s 14th Annual Innovative and Idea competition. What started as a frustrating internship in New York became a marvelous idea and between Jazmin and her father they put thought into action and they called their creation is set up to make it easier for family and friends to support students during their college education. The subscription-based site allows a student to input all of his or her reoccurring bills, such as Internet service or rent, on the site. The student then adds the e-mail addresses of people who might wish to offer support. Butler says their pre-written e-mails take some of the awkwardness away from asking people for money.

“We phrase it in a way to let them know how it will help them. It will give them time to improve their grades and focus” Butler stated.

Expected to launch early next year, Miss Butler hopes to expand into other applications, such as helping teachers purchase classroom supplies. IEI has a lot to offer not only business students but all students here at Temple University. This innovative young woman is a senior film and media arts major, which goes to show you that no matter what your field of study is, great ideas can be born and harnessed you just have to know where to look for that helping hand. Butler said the IEI is a great example of the fact that “Temple has a lot to offer to people. With all of this free information and resources, you can tell they really want you to succeed. Being in Philadelphia by myself, I needed that.”

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