Sebastian Oliver, Brian Bernard, and Dmitriy Telemtayev (pictured above, from left to right) co-founded RoomMe, a digital platform that helps college students find roommates. The three founders have always been interested in entrepreneurship and creativity through business and have found a way to implement this passion in their company. Sebastian is a recent graduate of the University of Virginia, having studied Computer Science and Economics, with multiple internships in the software and consulting fields. His love for working at the intersection of technology and business is evident through this work, with RoomMe being his fourth venture. Brian is a current student in the McIntire School of Commerce, studying Finance and Entrepreneurship. He first started cultivating an interest in the intersection of technology and entrepreneurship through drop shipping in high school. Now, he expounds upon that interest doing investment banking within technology. Dmitriy studies Quantitative Finance and Entrepreneurship at UVA, having always been interested in starting new things. These projects range from starting food resale in middle school to managing investors’ funds through a long/short equity model through high school and college. The founders' combined entrepreneurial vision and creativity are further enhanced by the technical erudition of software engineers, Ryan Chung and Mateen Afshari. Chung’s coding prowess and Afshari’s expertise in systems architecture have played an instrumental role in refining the RoomMe platform. RoomMe is the trio’s newest venture that all are working tirelessly towards success for. 

Dmitriy initially came up with the idea through YikYak, a popular anonymous social media app, and brought Sebastian and Brian together onboard. The trio and others in the community bonded over poor roommate-matching experiences in university. The out of state, in-state, and international students began to use their different yet similar perspectives to work towards alleviating this issue. 

The main goal of RoomMe is to help as many people as possible. From apartments to students, nothing brings the founders more joy than knowing they improved the operational efficiencies at an apartment or connected two students that end up becoming lifelong roommates. As long as RoomMe is able to make others’ lives easier, the venture has achieved success. Sebastian, Brian, and Dmitriy want to provide what they wish they had. They intend to provide a modern housing management solution and craft the best college roommate solution.

The i.Lab presents a unique opportunity for the founders of RoomMe to learn from mentors and founders from diverse backgrounds. With so many driven entrepreneurs, the trio views the i.Lab as a great place to iterate ideas from many unique vantage points. They advise others to “trust your gut, work hard, and validate your proof of concept constantly.” The founders champion a good team and consistent work ethic, working under the idea that “culture is king.”

Anonymous