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Chances are, you have been to a Kinko's copy store. Did you ever wonder where that funny name came from? Kinko was the nickname of curly haired college student Paul Orfalea who started his very first school-supply store out of an old hamburger stand.

Life hadn't always been good to Paul. He barely made it through elementary school, failing second grade twice. He was even thought to be mentally handicapped, and called a "problem child." Paul didn't know until he was 25 years old that he was dyslexic.

But despite these setbacks, Paul saw an opportunity that would change his life—and the way America did business. One day in college, he saw how busy the copying center was. "I figured, well, if they're busy there, why wouldn't they be busy at another college campus?" So Paul opened a store at the University of California at Santa Barbara.

Within nine years Kinko's was in all 50 states and at most college campuses. Now this copycat is a multi-millionaire. Kinko's has gone global with over 1,000 stores worldwide, making 16 billion copies a year.
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FROM: Living The American Dream: Barack Obama and Mark Burnett
Published on January 19, 2005

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