Student Services

Penn State Students Launch Online Marketplace

Students at Penn State have developed a new online marketplace for members of the University's Behrend community to buy, sell and trade textbooks, appliances, furniture and supplies that also allows property owners to post rental properties open to students.

The project, studenttrade.net, was developed by students Eric Wehler, Zach Reott and Scott Klein for a systems analysis course taught by Ido Millett, a professor of management information systems, that asked them to identify real-world problems and design solutions.

"Think Craig's List, but for students," said Wehler, a senior project and supply chain management major, in a prepared statement. "It's a service for the students and a way to help them save and make a little money."

"I've had this idea for about 18 months or so," added Wehler. "I always feel like it's hard to sell back your books after you purchase them, or you do not get much for them. I said, 'How can we get more money back for the students? Why can't we connect the students directly?'"

Idea in hand, Wehler partnered with Klein, also a senior project and supply chain management major, and Reott, a senior software engineering major.

Wehler said that he hopes to expand the free site, which launched December 12, to other schools, such as Gannon University, Mercyhurst University and Edinboro University of Pennsylvania, in the future. A "request school" option on the site is designed to help speed that process.

"Ultimately, we'd love to have 100 users or so by the end of the spring semester," Wehler said. "It is a self-sustaining Web site, but we have to make sure that we have a mass amount of users if this is to work."

More information is available at studenttrade.net.

About the Author

Joshua Bolkan is contributing editor for Campus Technology, THE Journal and STEAM Universe. He can be reached at jbolkan@gmail.com.

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