Between hitting the books and attending class, University of Tampa student Nick Chmura is finding time to run his own business.
In 2010, the UT student body president came up with the idea for BetterBoo.com, a web-app that helps people with gift giving.
“I was in a relationship and it was really hard to find gifts for my significant other,” Chmura said. “And I wanted to see if there was some kind of web service or tool we could create to help people in a similar boat.”
His idea quickly caught the attention of investors. In August 2011, it launched online.
Chmura said that even though his business has been online for a few months, the hard work has just started.
“Every day I want to make it better so that people are getting the gifts that they truly want and more people are signing up," he said. "So I have to work really hard at that, and eventually we will be at a point where I’m satisfied.”
Though BetterBoo.com is still a work in progress, it is getting national attention in the business world. Recently Inc. Magazine named the company one of “2012’s Coolest College Start-ups.”
Rebecca White, one of Chmura’s professors, said his business demonstrates how successful students can be.
“It’s really important for our community and the entire country,” she said. “That we have these really innovative young men and women taking what they’re learning and applying it to an exciting idea.”
Chmura said that with hard work, any entrepreneur can succeed if you have an idea.
“If you can make it seem like people would like it or sell it,” he said. “Then you can be a successful entrepreneur.”
Along with being CEO of BetterBoo.com, Chmura also co-owns another business.