New app helps students BuddyUp while studying


Brian Forrester Courtesy of Jules Garza

Chelsey Schallig, News Editor

Diablo Valley College students have the opportunity to find study partners and meet new people on campus.

Brian Forrester, chief executive officer of BuddyUp, was inspired by his own personal experience when he was failing a statistics class. He pitched the idea of the app to his university, but they did not fund the project. Forrester then recruited the computer science department and ended up creating a team of computer science majors to build a prototype over summer break, and the app was launched in 2014.

“When you’re in college it isn’t always obvious how to make friends or how to approach someone to be a study buddy,” wrote Forrester.

This is a simple private messaging app that connects students nationwide and is currently only available in the United States and Australia. As of Sept. 26, BuddyUp is available for all students at all major U.S. colleges in partnership with Chegg, an industry leader known for textbook rentals and homework help.

“It’s about taking the kinds of technology that we as millennials and post-millennials use in our everyday lives and applying it to the academic environment in ways that help us accomplish our goals and support each other,” wrote Forrester.

Since 2014 students were able to send buddy requests to each other, and if accepted, you’d be able to chat with each other.

Developers soon realized that the whole system made it difficult for students to message each other. As of this Fall, you can now send a message to anyone from your school through the app.

“It’s fun to browse through profiles and start chatting with people when you see they share your major, are looking for study partners or are just as obsessed with Game of Thrones as you are,” wrote Forrester.

Another new feature that came out this Fall allows students to create “groups” which are like classes but based on majors or which dorm you live in. The “group” feature is still an experiment for the app right now.

Forrester added, “In fact, a lack of adequate peer support is one of the leading causes of student dropout in the country, especially for first generation students, freshman students, and students of color.”

Students can benefit from this app and can feel more connected to their classmates. Freshman students are more likely to use this app twice as much as anyone else.

“It’s also been shown that if you have study partners and friends, you’re more likely to get the help you need and therefore get better grades,” wrote Forrester.