Student Success Stories

DANIELLE RUFFOLO

What is your major(s)?

I plan to graduate in May 2019 with a Bachelor's degree, majoring in Marketing and Entrepreneurship.

What is your success story?

During sophomore year, I took the Sophomore Experience course as part of the entrepreneurship program. Each student pitches a product idea to the class, and my idea was one selected to be marketed through a micro business. "Handy Hats" is a baseball hat with a discrete interior pouch that conceals items such as credit cards or cash. Over the course of the year, the Handy Hat debuted and successfully sold on campus, and won a Top 5 slot in the 2016 Annual Flyer Pitch Competition. I’ve also submitted trademark and patents applications to the US Patent & Trademark Office. After a successful close to the 2016-17 school year, we are taking steps to expand Handy Hats to the next level.

What are your best SBA experiences so far?

In addition to the incredible opportunity the Sophomore Experience course offered in terms of hands-on experiential learning on how to run a business, I have enjoyed being a part of Delta Sigma Pi which is a professional business fraternity that focuses on gaining exposure to the professional business world, creating social interactions/networking with other business students, and providing opportunities to give back through community service. Delta Sigma Pi not only led me to meeting some close friends, but it also has expanded my network and provided me with additional tools and experiences to become a much more capable and polished business person. I also enjoyed competing in the Flyer Pitch Competition. It kind of felt like I was on "Shark Tank," which I’ve always enjoyed watching, so it was so cool being on the other side where I was in front of a large group of people to present my idea. 

How do you expect to carry these experiences over into your future plans?

I am not sure where my business career will take me, but my experiences at UD have taught me to approach every day, every interaction, and every activity as a learning opportunity. I always have been a people person, and I find that my most enjoyable business experiences have involved the opportunity to engage and collaborate with others. The UD SBA curriculum and related extra-curricular activities provide numerous opportunities to engage with others, build character, and test/develop new skills. Whether I continue as President of my company, Handy Hats, or as a Marketing Director for one of my dream companies (like Disney), I’m confident that I’ll embrace every experience as an opportunity to develop and showcase my drive, my optimism, and my passion in all that I do.  

Why do you love UD?

As cliché as it sounds, I love the UD community. The UD culture is truly special. I love that UD is a Catholic Marianist institution where giving back to the community is core to who we are. On campus, there’s a unique sense of family where faculty, staff, and students care for and are extremely supportive of one another. This support fosters personal growth and provides students with the resources and tools needed to overcome challenges, to shine their light on others, and to put them on the path to reach their dreams.