outline of New York City with the words New York Innovation Trek Underneath
The Broke App Team

This project was a part of the University of Michigan - School of Information New York Innovation Trek. Students apply and are selected for the opportunity to form an idea around an area of passion, conduct customer development for that idea, and formulate a pitch to share with entrepreneurs already in the trenches in New York City.

Our team, a group of five, formed around a passion for financial literacy. We come from diverse backgrounds but hold a common belief that personal finance is a skill everyone should learn. This trek emphasized the importance of ideation and customer discovery. We brainstormed, conducted user research, and told our user's story and how we thought we could help them.

Image of whiteboard table where initial brainstorm took place

From the whiteboard..

Target audience quote that defines our problem

..to defining the problem..

Twitter feed data of hashtag broke

..to discovering the Value Proposition and creating user personas based on interviews and real data..

Mock-ups created in photoshop and snagit

..to Designing Prototypes to address contextual inquiries.


A lot has changed with the Broke App since it's beginnings. This project has been iterated and updated continually since the New York Trek in October 2014. There's a lot on this page that is no longer relevant to the project because we have progressed and learned, but I like to keep this page here as a reminder of how far we've come.