I set up my new students’ company called STU-CLOUD with a few friends from different schools in China recently. I planned to attend the 2016 High School Changemakers Challenge contest with this project, and I have already registered. By this time, we have successfully passed the first round of selection by submitting our proposal. The next round will be the presentation on Nov.25. And I will share some information about it in this article.
In short, STU-CLOUD provides a perfect, multi-function, online campus services solution designed for students.
We hope that by using WeChat and online websites, we can abstract useful information from traditional forms in campus public services, and transfer it into a new form, so that we can improve the efficiency of using information and resources, save cost for schools, and significantly improve the students’ experience in campus. Rather than being a dumb info-taker, you can be an info-finder with ease, just like observing everything above the cloud! So what we goanna do is to build an online information center, and provide some basic services such as Second-hand goods exchange and Lost & Found.
Through our own experiences and observation, as students, we find out that most schools are not using the most effective way to solve the problems that students overcome every day. There’s no innovative way to improve students’ experience. This causes a huge waste in information and resources. Through our investigation, we mainly find three problems.
We find that students own many unused but valuable goods and resources. They just wasted them. For example, text books and electronic devices. However, none of our competitors is perfect. For instance, they are not specifically designed for students. They are also not safe enough because the society is too chaotic. And we all know lost and found. It is a very common service, but it also has many problems. First, information asymmetry. Usually, if someone find something, he can transfer the information to the public very easily. But about the one who loses something? He or she will not have a way to transfer that information to the public. In addition, timeliness. Usually if you find something, what will you do next? Ok, you can shout on the broadcast. But no. Who wants a broadcast? What if you miss that tiny ten seconds of speech? You will never have a chance to know that again. This doesn’t work, because information is not transferred in the right way. In addition, because of lack of technology and awareness, traditional schools are not willing to solve these problems by the Internet. So, it is really embarrassing so see that our schools are still so old fashioned.
So we ask ourselves: What are the solutions? What we gonna do, is to put all campus services in one online platform. Let’s first talk about Second-hand goods exchange. We will build a campus service website that is can run on PC, phone and iPad at the same time. We will build up our own Wechat account. Buyers and sellers can upload their information about the goods they want to sell or buy on their phones. Yes, only by using your phones. And you can upload description, photos, locations, Wechat and phone numbers. We even have customer relationship, and do Q&As for our customers through QQ, Wechat and emails. Second, Lost & Found. After the goods exchange platform is built, we’ll copy and change it a little bit to make an online lost and found website. We will use Wechat to present information to our users so that no one will miss it. Both people who lose or find can submit description, photos, their phone numbers and even prize on the website. The customer relationship will keep contact with both users who lose and find until the case is finished. We will also provide free deposit services.
It seems like a thoughtful method, but you might wonder if this would actually succeed. In order to make sure our success, we have short term, mid-term and long term targets. In the short-run, we will do market research. We’ve already finished that, which is quite a good start. And our tech team will build up the original form of our website. In short run, we will only provide second-hand exchange and lost and found in just one school: Weiyu High School. And the first website will be available in about one month. Three months later, we will change the website a little bit according to students’ needs and wants, and start to bring impact on the school and the teachers by advertising on social medias. In the long term, about half to one year after we get started, we will further improve it and advertise it to more schools using research and development. We hope to add more new functions, and plan to run in at least five high schools in the following year.
But there is still one more question. Why do we need STU-CLOUD? What’s so attractive about it? There are four main characteristics of STU-CLOUD. From the very beginning when we first thought about STU-CLOUD, we believe that it must be modularized. This means that STU-CLOUD is not just a single service, but a combination of many different services. So second- hand exchange and lost and found are just two of the modules of our platform. What can we do if we have a good idea in the future? We just add it! And STU-CLOUD is completely customized, so the school can DIY the modules that they want, they can just switch of the modules they don’t need. Second, it’s duplicable. Once we finish a complete solution, we can simply apply and sell it to many other schools. And I think that’s why it should have a huge impact on the society. There are so many schools and so many students in Shanghai, in China and even in the world. It is just so easy to spread it all around the world. Can you dream of that in the future, by using STU-CLOUD, any school can own such a powerful online platform in just one click? No need for hiring professional teams. No need to rent expensive servers. And we can save so much time and so many resources. Isn’t that change amazing?
So this is not just an online platform that provides campus services. We all believe that, and you must believe that this is the future, the future for the schools and the future for all the students.