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DontPayFull Annual Student Scholarship: Best Answers

DontPayFull Annual Student Scholarship
Written by Irina Vasilescu

Winning a $1,000 scholarship could be as easy as writing a great essay about a memorable money-saving experience. That’s right! The only requirements are that your story should be original, true, and an exciting read – no heavy research required!

Benjamin Pfeifer is the winner of the 2018 DontPayFull Annual Student Scholarship – his essay stood out among 1,200 applicants, Benjamin gaining the $500 we offered for our 2018 scholarship winner.

This year, the stakes are even higher as students compete for $1,000 towards their education. We’re changing up our topic, but if you’d like to see what caught our eye last time round, you’ll enjoy reading these examples.

DontPayfull’s Best Scholarship Answers of 2018

Question: If You Could Open an Online Store What Type of Products Would You Sell?

Benjamin Pfeifer

Benjamin Pfeifer

I actually am launching an online store right now – it should be up and running by the end of October. My business partner/roommate and I are selling wristbands that hold a key. We call the product Clave, which means “key” in Spanish, but in the context of “the key concept,” not a physical key (llave). It’s a play on words, because we want this item to be a key part of people’s daily dress.

We noticed that for the past 4 years going to the University of Dayton, many students (mostly females) wear their house key on their wrist, tied by a hair tie, string, or other similar mechanism. Almost all students at UD get one house key (most students live on campus in University housing), but none have a really good place to put it. We decided to solve that issue and make a business out of it.

It took over a year to find the right supplier and tweak our design until we liked it. We are now finally in the production stage, working with a factory in China that specializes in bracelets and other magnetic jewelry. We should get our first order of product in about 4 weeks, and we plan to be ready to sell as soon as we get them. We have an LLC and a bank account, a tax ID, and everything else ready to roll.

We are creating an online store through the Shopify service. We plan on pushing the page hard through social media. We also plan on going out into the UD community and selling. Our hope is that word will spread throughout UD, then to friends of UD students from back home who are at different colleges, and so on. To market online, we will take some good pictures of friends modeling the bracelet and push it through Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and other sites. We will probably put the product on Etsy, as well.

Clave as a company has potential to be more than just this product, also. Once we have established ourselves and have a good following, we plan on introducing other products along the same lines. The next two will be a bracelet that holds a car key fob, and a bracelet sold with a door handle that allows for hands-free, RFID scan-to-unlock technology. These products will also call for an online push through social media, and we will sell them through our online store(s).

Nneka Watson

Nneka Watson

Becoming an entrepreneur is more feasible now than at any time in humanity’s history. There are so many incredible platforms available to aspiring entrepreneurs. It is possible to come up with an idea, execute it, and present it on a digital shelf to a worldwide audience within a few days.

I have made it a goal of mine to someday create an online store that combines my knack for all things creative with my passion for providing resources and materials for those seeking speech and language related therapy.

Through my studies as a Communication and Sciences Disorder major, I have seen firsthand that there is a boundless need for speech therapy materials that offer simple content that is not only engaging, but effective in helping bridge gaps in communication.

While there is an abundance of speech therapy materials for children, there aren’t quite as many resources that cater to adults, so providing materials that can be used across the lifespan is something I would focus on.

I would like the store to be accessible not only for professional therapists but for parents and loved ones with a desire to be a part of fostering communication skills with someone they care about. It would be a great way to ensure progress continues after a speech therapy session.

I would also like to offer a wealth of information on how to use each product effectively depending on the individual goals and strengths of the person receiving therapy. 

It would be important to me to ensure that the products are developed with evidence-based research in mind, to ensure their quality and efficacy. The products would include a plethora of materials that range from things like traditional and digital books and flashcards to downloadable apps.

The challenge of venturing into the world of design, marketing, and branding is thrilling to think about. The learning involved would launch my creativity to a new place. The most exciting prospect of opening a store like this is that the journey would allow me to develop new skills beyond my area of study and the end product would allow me to offer something truly meaningful and transformative to the people around me. 

Kyle Yang

Kyle Yang

Business has the potential to change the status quo in important ways. Many of the greatest business leaders are aimed toward great achievements for mankind, using business to build followings.

Elon Musk is building a highly energy-sustainable world with Tesla that is moving the world to make smarter technological choices with regard to energy efficiency and the environment.

Jeff Bezos of Amazon entering the pharmaceutical industry in an effort to bring transparency to American healthcare, with leaders Jamie Dimon of J.P. Morgan Chase and Warren Buffet of Berkshire Hathaway, having recently acquired the online pharmaceutical company PillPack this June. It is an online service that sends pharmaceutical sorting devices to help people sort their medication (Walters, 2018).

With this acquisition, and with partners Dimon and Buffet, Bezos is beginning to make big changes to the way America functions with regard to healthcare, in similar fashion to Musk’s stir-up of technology.

If I could start an online retail store, I would sell pharmaceuticals and bring competition to Amazon. It would benefit Americans greatly if the pharmaceutical industry were honest and clear.

The website would be an online environment that integrated pharmaceutical companies, doctors and their patients to a healthcare focused, professional healthcare network and forum that allowed doctors to write in prescriptions, automatically notify the connected profile of the patient, bring up listings of competitive pharmaceutical products that the patient can choose from, and allow patients to purchase their medication on an automatic, subscription like basis that renews their prescriptions and charges them monthly.

The website would then send the pharmaceuticals to the patients doors in pre-sorted and organized packs that can aid the customer in taking their medications properly, renewing shipments with every new billing cycle. The listings would have clear directions, dosage, ingredients, manufacturing processes, purposes, and prices shown upfront before the patient purchases.

The patient can input insurance information to get discounts off those products, and all options would be easy to find. Open channels would also be integrated for professional advice from doctors, pharmacists, researchers, and other medical services. Open channels of communication would always be available to connect pharmaceutical companies, the doctors and pharmacists to patients regarding any questions or important medical advice pertaining to their condition. This way, open communication and forum could share professional advice and opinion not just to patients, but across the entire population’s demands for healthcare. 

All the patient would have to do is set up an account, have contact with their doctor, and buy the medication. It would be like an integrated, medical networking service that included direct doctor to patient contact, bringing deep medical conversations to America with the patients in mind. It would be of great benefit to patients: they could ask questions openly among the medical community, read up on the benefits and comparisons between drugs, and seek free and open professional medical advice. 

To America, starting this business would be to make healthcare a lot more real and commonplace among our highest focus and attention, and the conversation among medical professionals more open and public. Health is something everyone needs, and if health is a larger focus in our society, many problems like cancer or Alzheimer’s would have waves of public support behind finding cures.

Going to the pharmacy and picking up medication is a crucial part to many elderly and ill patients’ lives, and a more competitive healthcare environment built on a premise of transparency and the most beneficial of medical advice toward patients could break through barriers and limitations of pharmaceutical companies to put their best efforts into more advanced drugs and treatments.

Millions of people are afflicted with “terminal” illnesses, but “terminal” is just a limitation that requires just a nudge in the right direction to eliminate from our vocabulary. Every scientific breakthrough was thought to be “terminal” until someone or something found there to be more.

In physics, physicists thought the Newtonian methods of predictable classical mechanics were the “terminal” physics of the universe, until Einstein found a hidden relationship between matter and energy, and time and space. Physicists currently are working to uncover a “theory of everything” but it will surely not include “everything.”

Malignant cancers like osteosarcoma are not end roads, and surely not “everything” has been done. If the public is nudged in the right direction and the entire healthcare industry is focused on honest treatments and cures to health problems, along with the help of a more competitive market of pharmaceuticals that allow more transparency between pharmaceutical companies, doctors and patients, many of the leading problems today could be solved.

If I were to start an online store, selling pharmaceuticals— and ultimately healthcare transparency— would be the first step alongside Amazon and Berkshire Hathaway to transform healthcare in America.

Brooke Dees

Brooke Dees

If I had an online store, I would sell accessories for insulin pumps. I myself am type one diabetic, and I know what its like to have to wear a pump, namely the OmniPod, and even be embarrassed about people seeing it.

There are already companies that sell stickers and things you can put on the pumps, but I would want to put my focus on an item to help keep the adhesive on, while still looking pretty, because its hard to keep a pump on my arm as an 18 year old. I can only imagine whats its like for an 8 year old.

Personally there have been many times when I have had to wrap my arm in ace bandages, athletic tape, or anything else I could find to keep my pump from falling off, because they are so expensive you can not waste one. And with that, having to explain to everyone that asks, “whats wrong with your arm?” I feel that it is important to be proud of the life you were given and I think it could start with something as small as liking the way your insulin pump looks, all while having a way to keep it on. 

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About the author

Irina Vasilescu

Irina Vasilescu is our money-saving and DIY expert and also the editor-in-chief as she's always on the lookout for the latest online deals.

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