The Student News Site of Sacramento City College

The Express

The Student News Site of Sacramento City College

The Express

The Student News Site of Sacramento City College

The Express

Adrian Piñon: City College student talks new app, entrepreneurship

Photo by Niko Panagopoulos | Staff Photographer

By Ben Irwin | Editor-in-Chief | [email protected]

Entrepreneurship can be an intimidating journey to embark on, but City College student Adrian Piñon has tackled the beast head-on with the development of his software company and mobile application: TownToday.

“TownToday is going to help people interact a whole lot better through events,” said Piñon, “we will help users find nearby events. We do this by aggregating event information from across the web. We will be saving you a whole lot of time. Our intent is to make it fun and stylish.”

Piñon emphasized that TownToday is a free mobile app designed to give users only the information they want to see.

“You simply select event categories that you are interested in,” said Piñon. “So if you’re into sporting events, farmers markets or even food truck events, we want to tailor what you want to see 24/7. We don’t want to give you the junk you don’t want. So if you’re not into nightclub scenes, then we won’t show you that.”

Piñon’s idea for TownToday is rooted in his passion for communication and bringing communities together.

“The goal for the application is basically to promote human interaction. It might seem corny but I just want to bring communities together,” said Piñon, laughing as he continued, “there might be parents who have kids and just don’t have time to search through magazines or websites, or do the whole homework to find events. So the goal is to make finding events easier, fun and to bring communities together.”

While bringing communities together is a virtuous cause, carrying out such a vision is not for the faint of heart. The hustle runs in Piñon’s veins, who attributes his entrepreneurial spirit to his parents.

“My parents are both from Mexico, and when they came here, they came with the shirts on their backs,” said Piñon. “I was born in Palo Alto, California, and that’s kind of where my passion for technology was born.”

Piñon and his family moved to Sacramento early on in his life, where he saw the work ethic of his parents.

Adrian Piñon takes advantage of the resources available at the Hacker Lab and MakerSpace while developing his TownToday app. Photo by Niko Panagopoulos | Staff Photographer | [email protected]

“Throughout my entire life I have never known my parents to work for anybody,” said Piñon, “they have always just worked for themselves. They have done construction work, consulting, house cleaning; and I kind of wanted to emulate that, but 50 times better.”

Piñon’s parents keep him motivated towards his goals, but for him it takes more than just inspiration to walk the path of an entrepreneur.

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Piñon put the hard truth of entrepreneurship bluntly.

“You have to have tough skin,” said Piñon. “What it takes to be an entrepreneur is being rejected.”

Piñon recalled a pivotal moment dealing with rejection after doing a casting call for the popular TV show “Shark Tank”.

“I thought ‘OK, this is an amazing product, watch me go on national TV,’” said Piñon. “So I did my pitch, and they said, ‘Adrian you’re still very early on, I don’t think it’s going to work out.”

After taking a walk and letting the rejection sink in, Piñon gave himself a pep talk to rally his spirits.

“I told myself, ‘Adrian, entrepreneurship is an uphill battle, so you will be rejected,’” said Piñon. “I was driving back home and said ‘I can’t give up, I gotta do this.’ I locked myself in my room and just went all in. I had the crazy Einstein wall with all the sticky notes, just refining it. I have a passion for it and I’m super persistent, and that’s basically how I moved on after ‘Shark Tank’”.

A communication studies major at City College, Piñon is grateful for all the people and resources at City College that enable his entrepreneurial dreams.

“Sacramento City College has been a pillar of power for me,” said Piñon. “There’s great people at that campus.”

From business advice to refining his professionalism, people at City College like Michael Poindexter, former City College vice president; Tom Capaletti at Makerspace; Kimberly Ramos, Student Senate president; and Michael Gutierrez, City College president have been there to help propel Piñon toward his goals.

“President Gutierrez, who has come over from Texas—getting his perspective on Sacramento entrepreneurship, and incorporating his Texas style into my Cali swag,” said a laughing Piñon.

Piñon dished out some advice for young entrepreneurs looking to get started.

“Be confident in who you are,” said Piñon, “be comfortable in your own skin, and just rock it.”

Look for Piñon’s app TownToday to start bringing communities together in early May 2019.

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