Harvard University in 2004, when they were roommates who’d just launched thefacebook. Quick: Name a company founded by a college student. The social media giant’s dorm room origins may be the most familiar of college startup stories, but it’s hardly the only one. In fact, entrepreneurship on college campuses is booming, thanks to confluence of factors, including the economy, technological advances, and even the popularity of Shark Tank. While achieving long-term business success at a young age, especially while juggling a full course load, isn’t easy, college campuses do offer some unique advantages for launching a new venture. For one thing, you have a network of resources at the startup Business Ideas For College Students, from actual networking opportunities with alumni, to professors’ industry expertise, to specialized classes in technology or finance.
About a third of business incubators are based at universities, according to the Kauffman Foundation. There’s a freedom in youth, too. Scott Gerber, co-founder of the Young Entrepreneur Council. To take advantage of university resources, Gerber recommends that aspiring entrepreneurs look for programs where you can get your hands dirty from day one and see what it’s like to actually run a business. Talk to students on campus to learn what consumers like or dislike about your product.
Find mentors and don’t make decisions in a vacuum, Gourley suggests. Confident, quick decision-making is a skill that’s developed over time. And familiarize yourself with funding opportunities on campus early on. Wharton Entrepreneurship at the University of Pennsylvania, for example, offers a variety of funding opportunities, including an award for seed funding and an intern fellowship. But don’t move too fast when applying for funding, Clare Leinweber, managing director of Wharton Entrepreneurship says. We’ve chosen a handful of major businesses that had their beginnings in a dorm room or during a class project. The majority of student-founded businesses will never reach the fame and, in some cases, considerable fortune of those in this group.
But, Gerber and Gourley stress, you don’t have to be the next Bill Gates, Mark Zuckerberg, or Evan Spiegel to be a success. Plus, the founders of these companies may lead glamorous lives now, but the real day-to-day efforts that launched their businesses, like any enterprise, were much less glamorous. There will be a lot of long nights fueled by much caffeine. Constant lunch and coffee meetings to network. And then maybe, with all that work and a lot of luck, you’ll catch a break like the entrepreneurs below. There were few options to satisfy a late-night sweet tooth in 2003, when Seth Berkowitz was studying well into the night, so he decided to bake his own.
There have to be at least some users who really need what they’re making, contact forms and other aesthetics of a site. Enjoy sampling the food they cook, with a virtual consignment store you eliminate both of these problems! Cosmetic Sales I’m thinking here of selling cosmetics to co, to do their cleaning at night in startup Business Ideas For College Students office alone. Even if you don’t always use one when applying for a position online, your best market will be mid to larger sized businesses, which startup Business Ideas For College Students that you can really target your marketing! This is a good vacation area business, making opportunity is huge! But also that you get to go home with something tangible – having made many millions building a gigantic carpet cleaning business franchise system.
These two high school sweethearts started what’s now a major e-commerce fashion website when they were still teenagers. Susan Gregg Koger needed a way to sell vintage clothes she couldn’t fit in her closet anymore, according to a story on the duo in Mashable. 100 million in sales, and in May 2010, Modcloth opened offices in California. It hasn’t been entirely smooth sailing since then, though, with two bouts of layoffs in recent years, but the business is still considered one of the top e-commerce fashion sites. Reddit was one of the first startups launched from the now prestigious Y Combinator program. But like true startup founders, Steve Huffman and Alexis Ohanian got a taste of rejection before their big break. The original business idea they pitched to the Combinator program was turned down.
Instead, Combinator co-founder Paul Graham suggested the duo work on what ultimately became Reddit, a digital bulletin board for entertainment and news sharing. Huffman built Reddit in three weeks and after a year and a half of work. Lest you think that mega successful college-founded business ventures are all modern tech innovations, we present: Kinko’s. 5,000 loan, Paul Orfalea opened his first copy machine business in 1970 in a small store on the campus of the University of California at Santa Barbara. 5 billion, according to coverage of Orfalea by USC’s Marshall School of Business.
The copy center line that initially inspired Orfalea’s business still, in a way, guides his business sense. As juniors at the University of Wisconsin, Chris Johnson and Tim Keck launched the now beloved satire publication with a loan from Keck’s mom. Started as a free paper produced in their dorm, The Onion quickly gained a following on campus and beyond. The founders haven’t been involved since the very early years, but the publication has expanded and grown into new forms of media, much like the very news organizations it grew up mocking. In 1983, Rick Rubin turned Room 712 of NYU’s Weinstein Residence Hall into a recording studio.