Student entrepreneur juggles two businesses, schoolwork

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Communication senior Tristan Mace was recently named a TSM board member. An active entrepreneur, Mace has started two businesses.

Photo Credit: Jamaal Felix | Daily Texan Staff

Public relations senior Tristan Mace has always had an eye for design and a head for numbers.

Mace created his first website development company at 14. At 16, he sold that company to media firm Livney+Partners, launching his journey toward owning two highly successful companies before college graduation.

Mace said he taught himself to make websites by replicating personal and company websites and making small changes to see what he felt looked best.

“I created some websites and pastry chef Pichet Ong, who is frequently on The Oprah Winfrey Show, asked if I would create his recipe portfolio,” Mace said.

Mace, originally from The Woodlands, said he applied to the McCombs School of Business in 2008 and was surprised he wasn’t accepted even with his high grades and previous business experience.

“It’s better in the end, and I will fully recognize that,” Mace said. “I went into advertising in the communication school, and senior lecturer Terry Hemeyer suggested that I switch my major to public relations to diversify my skill set.”

Mace said that despite having some experience when he arrived, skills he has learned at UT are giving him new creative tools and ideas.

“[Senior business lecturer] Dr. [Michael] Brandl, who I took two classes with my freshman year, he’s an economist and taught me to look at interesting mathematical models to discern whether a business idea was viable enough to consider it or give it funding,” Mace said.

Mace started two companies in January that require frequent travel and take up much of his time. UT has helped him find strategic ways to complete his degree and continue to be successful as a businessman.

Mace created ParkerMace, a consulting company, and travel company Want Me Get Me, in January.

“ParkerMace specializes in branding and helping companies rediscover who they are and what they do,”

Mace said. “When a client or potential client comes to us, we begin an initial phase of researching who they really are, their passions and why they started that company. We try to make associations with their target audiences and go from there.”

Mace said the University is ParkerMace’s biggest and most recent client. The company is working on projects with the Office of the Dean of Students and Student Government.

The company Want Me Get Me fell into place by chance when an “angel” investor interested in meeting Mace asked Dallas businessman Jeffrey Hedge to make the meeting happen. He and Hedge created an immediate friendship and co-created the company that will officially launch in two or three months.

The company is a membership-only travel group with a hotel search engine that allows its members to find hotels nationally and internationally, request amenities and make reservations. He said each experience is tailored to the individual.

“Our platform is really the top hotels of the world. We have the most exclusive, highest rated big names in the hospitality industry,” Mace said.

Membership is free, but members are hand-selected by the board of directors based on an algorithm they developed.
Student government president Natalie Butler said the company ParkerMace is currently working to create a new SG website.

“We’re working through concepts for the website right now, and I’m really happy with what we are working on,” Butler said. “We really wanted it to be more interactive and easier to view, and he is making that happen.”
Mace took senior advertising lecturer Lisa Dobias’ introduction to media class, and Dobias said Mace was active and successful.

“He’s obviously very motivated and intelligent and forward-thinking,” Dobias said. “He brought a lot to the classroom with examples and helped a lot of students along the way.”