Entrepreneurial drive computes to tuition payments, URI degree
Warwick resident Andrew Clemente has always enjoyed playing around with computers, but it was when he saw he could make a profit from web design that he became most interested.
“I sold a small project I was working on when I was 14 for $200 and at the time, I thought it was the best thing,” he said. “Once I saw there was money to make, I knew I wanted to pursue design.”
By age 12, Clemente had already made his first website for his local baseball team. By 14, he’d had his first paid job and by 16, he’d sold his first website. It’s no surprise then that Clemente graduated this year from the University of Rhode Island with a degree in entrepreneurial management.
“Andrew has been playing with computers since the moment my daughter brought one home,” said Andrew’s grandmother Barbara Fontes.
Apparently, his love of computers has paid off.
When Clemente was 16, he sold his first website called Devlounge.net for $15,000, which he used to pay for his first year at URI. The website was created as a resource for web designers and developers.
“I wrote tutorials for the website and put up a lot of free things
such as website themes,” said Clemente. “ The website had a consistent amount of traffic, which is why I was able to sell it for so much.”
Clemente didn’t waste any time starting his next project. In 2008, Clemente created and sold another website called markettheme.com.
“It was a template that anyone could buy and it basically allowed anyone to sell their own products online,” said Clemente. “I was selling the template by itself for three months and sold around 300 copies. After that I decided to sell the website as a whole.”
Since then, Clemente has worked on over 50 different websites, including the URI website, which he has been helping to redesign for the past three years.
“Working at URI has given me the opportunity to do things that I never knew how to do three years ago and probably never would have learned if I didn’t work there,” Clemente said.
While Clemente has worked on projects from clients all over the U.S. and even from other countries, he’s currently trying to gain more Rhode Island business.
“Recently I’ve been trying to focus on more local clients,” he said. “I’ve been really focusing on trying to find more
work from people in the area”
In January of this year, Clemente created a website for Rachel’s Basic Bites, a small startup business in Kent County, that sells
handcrafted organic granola bars. Owner Rachel Mazoni was more than satisfied with Clemente’s work.
“He definitely exceeded my expectations,” said Mazoni. “He had these great creative ideas about design. He was very reliable, efficient, and was quite meticulous, which I loved. If I had a problem he’d get right on it. He made it all very easy and comfortable.”
You can see this website and others Clemente has worked on and created on his personal online portfolio. The site was created in 2005 and since then, Clemente has kept updating and adding new work to the site.
You can contact Clemente through his portfolio at www.astereostudio.com.