Some students have said goodbye to Abraham Lincoln and Andrew Jackson and embraced a new cash-free transaction service called Ivy.
PayWithIvy.com is a new payment system that was introduced and supported by Duke Student Government in February. Similar to the online payment service PayPal, students using Ivy electronically transfer funds to one another or any other member connected to the system through the Internet using either a computer or mobile device. The accounts directly link to a participant’s credit card or bank account and keep track of all previous transactions and records.
The information is protected by bank-level encryption.
Ivy was created by Zach Abrams, Trinity ’07, and Sean Yu, formerly a mathematics and computer science double major who left Duke as a junior to focus his energy on creating Ivy with Abrams. Both founders taught themselves multiple programming languages to get Ivy off the ground.
“We’ve had pretty good success at Duke,” Abrams said, noting that the service has over 700 users at the University even though it has not been marketed much.
Since the University administration is in the process of changing its current DukeCard provider, the integration of Ivy into the DukeCard system has been postponed, lengthening the process that will result in Flex and Food Points being used with an Ivy account, Abrams said.
When DSG Vice President for Services Tre Scott, a sophomore, introduced Ivy at the February DSG meeting, he said it had the potential to simplify transactions such as instantly donating to groups tabling on campus.
“It’s just a simple process,” Scott said.
Ivy has grown at other university campuses as well, particularly New York University and Columbia University. Most of Ivy’s volume comes from fraternities, sororities and other living groups who use the new product as a more effective means to collect dues, Abrams added.
Ivy’s personnel yare working to get more student groups and individual students involved with Ivy. In addition, the group is expanding its team. Ivy creators are also planning to hire six more people, four of which will be interns from Duke, although those students have not yet been selected.
This summer, Ivy is planning on introducing a rewards program, which is designed to give users the opportunity to win their money back after a payment.
“The way the rewards program works is after a payment you will have options to win rewards and have a chance to make your money back,” Abrams said. “It’s designed for students to have fun after their transaction.”
Additionally, Ivy is implementing a process in which students and groups can buy and sell tickets through the Ivy website and will also be launching a mobile application Friday to increase accessibility and convenience, Abrams added.
“The mobile app will complete Ivy as a company,” Scott said.
The mobile application, however, will only be available to iPhone users due to complexities with software and programming. A mobile application for Android users will be available in the summer.