HFX Tutoring, a tutoring club started by second-year neuroscience student Lia Reed, is a company focused on students helping students to succeed.
Reed started the company about one year ago, after noticing that a Facebook group existed for chemistry students to help each other in their first semester, but not in their second. Quickly, Reed started a group of her own for students to use. She quickly had more students than she could handle.
“I was tutoring seven students at once and I met with them at least once a week, and I just couldn’t handle it anymore,” Reed says. “When I saw how much of a need there was I didn’t want to turn people away, so I asked other people to start helping me.”
After Reed started her own tutoring club, Joseph Harrietha saw an ad for the group. He decided that he wanted to get back into tutoring, and proposed to Reed that they turn her idea into a business. The two have been working together ever since.
While both Harrietha and Reed tutor students along with running the group, they’ve also expanded to add a team of tutors to the business.
The tutors are screened through grade point average, skill, and through the company’s ‘thrice interviewed, twice tested’ method. Through this system, Reed and Harrietha meet the prospective tutor, interview them, and then have them sit in on one of their own regular sessions with a student.
Following that session they interview the candidate a third time, asking what they learned from observing, and then they reverse the roles and sit in on one of the new tutor’s sessions after finding them their first client.
“We want to make sure that they’re team players, they’re lots of fun, they’re going to make tutoring exciting for their students instead of something that they would dread, and just to make sure that they are really looking out for the entire team so that we can all work together,” Reed says. “It’s kind of like a family.”
One of the main points for the company is that it’s not all about money. They emphasize that they want to be a service to students; they’re there solely to help them succeed.
“The profits we take [from the tutors] are as minimal as possible in order to pay for the time of the marketing and the website maintenance and the database stuff and client acquisition,” Harrietha says. “It’s about letting students save money and letting tutors make money. That’s really all it comes down to. As long as the business stays intact and we pay all our expenses I don’t care how much we make.”
Both tutors see a future for the company. They’re looking into adding video conferencing for tutoring sessions, creating an app, and even branching into other cities in other provinces. When it comes time for both students to move on, they hope to pass it on so that students can continue to benefit from it.
HFX Tutoring Club can be found at hfxtutoring.com