Beemia Celebrates State College Community With Official Launch Party
A new lifestyle app created by Penn State graduates celebrated its launch to connect Penn State students to downtown State College and recognize the purpose it serves in connecting the local community.
Beemia held its official launch party at Happy Valley LaunchBox Wednesday. The app initially debuted back in March, but its creators wanted to formally recognize the State College community and the people who have supported them throughout the process.
“We really wanted to put this event together to show how a community can be built in one platform,” said CEO Andrew Strause. “What we’re trying to do is really highlight things that are already going on, really connecting this community not only on campus but off campus.”
Beemia was originally called FindItU before rebranding. At the time, it featured only apartment listings. Strause came up with the idea during his senior year at Penn State while talking with a friend about how bad they though downtown student housing was. This led to a conversation about all the ways students are unaware of events happening downtown.
The creators worked with Invent Penn State to assist in bringing Strause’s idea to fruition through the Ben Franklin Technology Partners’ TechCelerator program this past spring.
Along with Strause, the team consists of Chief Information Officer Dan Lordan, Chief Sales Officer Giancarlo Avendano, Chief Communications Officer Colleen McBride, and Chief Content Officer Nicole Kosuda.
Kosuda presented a sneak preview of the Beemia promotional video, which will be released in August on all of the app’s social media accounts.
Chief Communications Officer Colleen McBride said the goal of Beemia is to act as the older sibling that some students might not have to help them navigate their way during their time in college.
“Not every student has that network,” McBride said. “We don’t want a lack of a student’s network to hold them back from finding the right path for them in college.”
Penn State President Eric Barron and State College Mayor Don Hahn were in attendance. Barron agreed it’s important to have a resources to connect college students to their community.
“This is a powerful part of what Penn State is all about,” Barron said. “Students’ successes, building strong communities, and how it is we’re serving our land-grant mission Beemia is perfect.”
Following Barron, Lordan spoke about the updates that were made to the app. New features include information about topics like sublets, bar specials, and local musicians. Lordan also mentioned that the creators are also working on a traits to help users personalize the app to their interests.
Prior to the event starting, local musician Jason Adams strummed on his guitar and sang for those in attendance. Other local musicians Aaron Bear and Bill Ryan entertained guests after the event.
Beemia is also expanding its services to four other colleges in the fall: Rutgers, Maryland, University of Delaware, and University City in Philadelphia.
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