KSU sophomore lands early career

Photo courtesy of FlashNotes.

Photo courtesy of FlashNotes.

Kelli Fitzpatrick

Read here to find out what professors think about buying notes online.

A college student’s life plan usually goes something like this: finish school, earn a degree, find a job and begin a career.

But for Patrick Kennedy, sophomore managerial marketing major, the plan went a little differently. He is only halfway through his second year of college, and his career has already found him.

Kennedy said he began selling on FlashNotes in Fall 2010, the first semester of his freshman year. He made a few hundred dollars within two weeks and then hit a snag when the site wouldn’t let him upload a file. He emailed Matousek about the problem and soon Kennedy was starting his second semester of college as the first Kent State campus representative for FlashNotes.

Kennedy worked as a campus rep for the Spring and Fall 2011 semesters. By the end of the year, he was really grabbing Matousek’s attention.

What is FlashNotes, and how can it help me make money?

FlashNotes is an online marketplace where students can buy and sell class notes and study guides. Students can upload and post their files to FlashNotes.com, then set their own price ($1.99 to $36) and make 80 percent of the selling price.

Students can apply to be a FlashNotes campus representative by sending their resume and cover letter to [email protected]


“He made thousands of dollars on the site, so I reached out to him,” said Matousek, who graduated from Kent State with a finance degree in 2010. “He had fire: You could see it talking to him. (With) any company, that’s the most important thing you want to see.”

Matousek offered Kennedy the job of FlashNotes marketing coordinator.

“I didn’t even ask him for his grades,” Matousek said. He knew Kennedy could be marketing coordinator because of “that energy, that enthusiasm he brings to work.”

Kennedy said he paid his Kent State tuition bill and accepted the job within the same week.

“It was very hectic,” he said. “I was switching around classes and, next thing you know, I’m moving to Boston.”

Kennedy, a Harrisburg, Penn., native, relocated and reduced his course load to half-time status. He had the job approved as a three-credit-hour internship and signed up for an online entrepreneurship class.

He may have already landed a career, but Kennedy said he will still pursue his education.

“One of the things I had to promise my parents was getting my degree,” he said. “I probably won’t be on track for a four-year degree, but (having) the opportunity with this company, it doesn’t make sense to stay full-time.”

Matousek said Kennedy, as marketing coordinator, will be the “liaison” between FlashNotes and college campuses.

“He’s hiring multiple kids right now, (looking) to fill his position as a campus rep,” Matousek said. “He’s getting to know the intricate details of the campuses to find out what works for marketing.”

Kennedy said he is also helping design the company’s campus rep program.

“I was kind of the pilot of it last year, so we’re taking everything that worked with me and putting it on a large scale,” he said.

How many campus reps?

Kennedy said FlashNotes is accepting applications for campus reps.

“We’re hiring quick; we’ve got to expand the team out,” Matousek said. “Any rep that does an exceptional job has an opportunity to work with us” at a full-time position, as Kennedy does.

A campus rep position requires 10 to 15 hours a week for $8 an hour plus commission on any notes sold by Kent State students.

Representatives promote FlashNotes, plan events and help manage its social media, Kennedy said. FlashNotes is working on getting the campus rep position approved for internship credit.

Kennedy said he is excited to help build the company and find new student employees.

“The opportunity is huge (because) the company is very young,” Kennedy said. “We’re going straight to the top, hiring people and getting everything together. It’s an unbelievable experience.”

Contact Kelli Fitzpatrick at [email protected].