College students established some of the most successful businesses in the world. In fact, some businessmen never finished college because their businesses took off before they could. Sometimes, they dropped out to do the same thing they went to college to learn.
There are a plethora of successful businessmen that stayed the course, got their degree and still turned their college ventures into successful, thriving, profitable businesses.
This can be one of the best times in your life to try your hand at building a business and you don’t have to drop out of college to do it.
Here are some reasons why college is the best time to start a new business venture.
1. You Have Access to A Greater Wealth of Resources
There will never be another time when you have the same freedom and access to capital like when you are a college student. As such, you most likely have only a few financial commitments and even several expenses paid for.
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Not to mention, your classmates give you access to one of the cheapest and best think tanks and labor pools you are ever likely to run across. Your teachers can be your best mentors and offer a wealth of advice, the type you’d have to pay for one day.
In addition, there is a wide range of business endeavors you can engage in that will both give you a wealth of experience while gaining you credit in classes.
Perhaps the best part of running a business when you are in college is that there will never be a time when business failure, which is so critical to ultimate success, will be less painful for you to endure.
2. You Can Find Great Business Mentors
Finding great mentors will probably never be easier than when you are in college. Once you leave college, people start charging you for the same advice they will give you for free while you are in college.
Look into your college connections to see what opportunities are presented to you. Maybe you can get enrolled in a mentorship program or become a member of a startup incubator.
College offers an opportunity to start building a network that will stand you in good stead once you leave. You are exposed to a variety of people studying different fields that will achieve differing levels of success. The likelihood is, you will meet people in college that will end up in finance, the tech industry and even government.
These contacts could be invaluable in whatever business or line of work you choose to pursue.
3. Your Part-Time Job Can Become a Success Factor for Your Startup
No matter what kind of business you hope to one day engage in, sales will be a critical part.
Even attorneys and doctors have to gain paying clients if they want to stay in business. While they might not like to call it such, the truth is no matter what kind of product or service you offer, you are going to need to sell it to potential clients or consumers at some point.
As Mark Cuban famously says: “no sales, no business.”
Getting work experience in college can provide you an invaluable learning opportunity, particularly if sales is not what you want to do. One type of job that is almost always available is a job in sales. Since most sales positions are commission based, sales jobs are present in even the worst economies, when sales are harder than ever.
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If you get some sales experience and learn how to sell products well, the one thing you can count on is that you will rarely be unemployed.
Learning to sell while working for others and testing different methods before starting a business venture will raise your chances of success.
4. Your College Itself Can Provide Invaluable Connections
While you can build your own luck while you are in college, your college itself can provide you invaluable connections.
See if your college has partnerships with any angel investors. Or, maybe you can find an internship position through your college that might change your perspective of business and teach you things a college professor never could.
Alumni associations will give you access to a wide range of established and successful connections you will never meet otherwise.
Colleges have a vested interest in seeing their graduates succeed as it makes them more desirable as an educational destination. The more desirable they are as an educational institution, the more educational funding it brings in.
Therefore, your college has every bit as much of a desire to see you succeed as you do and will most likely offer you a wealth of tools with which to do so.
5. You Can Apply for An Entrepreneurship Scholarship
The first problem all business owners need to address is funding. Being an entrepreneurial college student opens the doors for entrepreneurship scholarships. This funding is unavailable to non-students, unlike crowdfunding and angel investors.
Your college business may or may not generate a great deal of income on its own, but it can still bring you a profitable return in the form of scholarships and grants. Donors and institutions know that the captains of industries of the future are often today’s college students.
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The same way that professional sports teams hunt talents as early as in high school, so do many venture capitalists and other investors. If you apply and win an entrepreneurship scholarship tailored to fund your first venture, starting a business in college can become worthwhile.
According to a Bloomberg report, 80% of businesses fail within the first 18 months. This means there is a great chance your first business will fail – maybe even your second and third. Handling setbacks when you are in college may be the least painful time in your entire life to have a business fail.
Starting a business in college gives you the opportunity to either get a jumpstart on building your empire or give you one of the safest places you may ever have to crash and burn.
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