Student Entrepreneur Celebrates Home Through Clothing Brand
Syracuse University sophomore and co-owner of the Connecticut-based lifestyle brand, The Two Oh Three, Roscoe Brown is finding the balance between studying and managing a growing business.
Driven by their passion for the 203 area code, Roscoe and his sister Tory have been building their business since Roscoe was a senior in high school. A dual major in Advertising and Information Management and Technology, Roscoe’s professors at the S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications have been very helpful by allowing Roscoe to incorporate his business into class projects.
“I took [an information management and technology] with Professor Jeff Rubin last semester,” Roscoe said. “[What] I got out of that class is unparalleled to anything else.”
That class required a deep analysis of an internet market, and the development of an online business plan. Rubin allowed Roscoe to use his existing company when students had to create a business for class assignments.
“Our spreadsheets became more effective. Our site was finally coded to have a live Twitter feed,” he said. “The Two Oh Three became a way for me to hack my education and bring my courses to life.”
The 203 is home to beach communities, farms and small shops. It also is the pathway to other popular Northeastern getaways from the slopes to the world’s most incredible city—New York City, Roscoe said.
Many of the brand’s followers are from the area, and the siblings are glad that their products are loved by residents and tourists.
At first they made shirts— tees and tanks that were targeted and popular within a younger demographic, and as the temperature drops they’re also adding winter items.
Two Oh Three’s passion for the area goes beyond clothes. Roscoe and his sister created 203 Community Day on February 3rd, 2014.
“203 Community day isn’t about categorizing people,” Roscoe said. “It’s not about rich or poor, young or old. It’s about extending a gesture of kindness to as many people as we can regardless of who they are.”
From passing out gloves to picking up trash, the siblings envisioned a way to involve the whole community through volunteering. “We decided to create a campaign to encourage small acts of kindness,” Roscoe said. “To end with one final night of gestures would be the perfect way to spread communal warmth.”
It takes a lot of energy to balance Roscoe’s multiple roles, but he finds that engaging with the community reenergizes him.”I firmly believe that college is about much more than obtaining a degree,” he said said. “So while it is important to get good grades and work on Two Oh Three, it is also just as important, if not more important, to take breaks and surround myself with people I enjoy.”
Images Courtesy of The Two Oh Three