For Sam Friedman ‘96, thinking differently is the norm. It’s what led him to question a seemingly mundane activity, one in which people engage almost automatically every day – parking. He built an app called ParkMe that finds, reserves, and pays for the cheapest, closest available parking spot or lot in real-time. Rather than driving around looking for parking, getting to a lot only to find that it’s full or having to physically search for the best rate, the app does all that for you.
Sam’s tendency to constantly find ways to improve systems and processes is no coincidence – it’s something he learned at Wildwood, where he was encouraged to follow his intuition when it came to finding creative solutions to problems. In addition to memories of great teachers, Big Yard and life skills classes at Wildwood, he recalls a “sense of truly feeling accepted as an individual by the faculty, staff, and students.”After graduating from Wildwood, Sam studied Economics at the University of Colorado, Boulder. He sold ParkMe, Inc. and is now developing a boutique hotel in Joshua Tree. His personal ties to Wildwood remain strong – his closest friends (including his business partner) are fellow alumni and his father, John Friedman, is a member of the Board of Trustees. As Wildwood continues to evolve, Sam feels that his alma mater has become even better at what it did best when he graduated in 1996. Likewise, we can’t wait to see what Sam does next!