The life of a university student is certainly not easy. It can be a constant struggle to keep up with work, friends and of course, sleep. And when you add in extra-curriculars like clubs and societies, and keeping up to date with on-campus events, it's practically impossible. It's easy to lose touch with your university community.
Carleton student Elias Fares noticed this problem. As an engineer major, Fares was extremely busy and missed a lot of events on campus due to his hectic study schedule. So, as any true entrepreneur would, he created a solution in the form of Campusgrids.
Campusgrids is a brand-new website for students, designed to help them find events on campus and keep up with club activities.
Currently, the site is exclusive to Carleton students. Fares decided it was easier to launch Campusgrids if he focused the attention on one school and he received a lot of support from campus organisations like CUSA.
But how did an electrical engineer create a website? Not without some difficulty.
“It was pretty hard," said Fares. "I didn’t know any software skills or how to make a website, so I had to teach myself everything. I spent a lot of time on YouTube watching videos of people doing it."
Fares started the venture on his own, and admitted that the site was not the most attractive at first.
“Other people joined the team and they helped me make it look nicer,” Fares said.
Fares and his team are working hard to get Campusgrids to the next level. He now has a team of about 8 people and the site has grown a lot in since its initial launch. There are now approximately 1,000 users.
Since starting the website, his already hectic life has gotten even crazier. The average day for Fares consists of classes, labs, Campusgrids meetings and emailing organisations, with few breaks in between.
"Working until 3 a.m. is a normal thing, student during the day and then president at night,” said Fares.
His hard work has not gone unrecognised. The Carleton University Entrepreneurs awarded Fares and his Campusgrids team the Student Entrepreneurship Award for 2012.
Campusgrids has had many successes, but it is by no means nearing the end of the road. The organisation already has plans to expand to more universities like the University of Ottawa.
The future looks bright for this organisation that's not just another social network. Having trouble connecting with your university community? Elias Fares just made it a little easier.