Oh wow, this is really cool! Thanks! I've poked around here for about a little over a month and hadn't seen this one yet.
I'm not a student, however I've only recently renewed my interest in fountain pens and have picked up a handful of "starter" pens since I joined FPN after reading through many old posts about recommended starter pens.
These are my impressions:
Parker Vector (<$20 USD)
Very lightweight plasticky pen, writes smoothly, but lacks soul. It's a perfectly functional pen, but I don't find myself reaching for it often. I'm going to see whether my 9yr old would be interested in using this. I picked up a separate ink converter for this pen since it doesn't come with one.
Pelikan Pelikano (<$20 USD)
I think this is aimed toward someone in elementary school, and I see how the design may appeal more toward kids. That is, you're not going to pull out this pen during a meeting in the "Corporate World". LOL. I picked this up for my daughter and she liked it for a while. It writes pretty well and I like using it from time to time. I am open to trying out a higher end Pelikan due to how nicely this "kids" pen writes.
Hero 448 (~$5 USD)
This is not a pen anyone recommended on FPN, I just picked it up to try out a Chinese pen, and I'll admit I also picked it up because it was pink. It is a small pen, short with very slim barrel, so it would not be comfortable for anyone with average/large hands. The slide converter does not hold much ink, however this makes for a good excuse to change colors. My 9yr old loves this pen and dropped the Pelikano to take this one to school.
Pilot Metropolitan ($15 USD)
This pen wrote smoothly right out of the box. I picked up the Medium point. The metal gives the pen a nice weight to it (if that's what you like) and the pen looks much more expensive than $15. I will definitely pick up the Fine point. This pen comes with an ink converter, not bad for a cheap pen. The pen is a bit "slippery" and the rounded ends don't really help, so I make sure to clip it when I insert it into the pen slot of my bag.
Lamy Safari/Vista/Al Star ($25-40 USD)
These are all different flavors of the same base pen. Safari is plastic. Vista is a clear demontstrator. Al-Star is aluminum. They don't come with an ink converter so that would need to be purchased separately.
I have a love and hate relationship with these pens. It's not a particularly pretty pen to look at. They don't write well out of the box and need a bit of "fiddling" before they work properly. That said, I have picked up 5 of these in the last 2 months (3 Safaris, 1 Vista, 1 Al Star). It's really odd, even though the Metropolitan writes smoother, feels like a "nicer" pen and costs less, I feel more comfortable carrying the Safari/Vista/AlStar around (as my EDC pen) without fear of it getting lost or trashed from daily use.
After reading old posts about demonstrators and non-C/C fillers, I'm now interested in trying out a TWSBI 580.