It’s fairly usual for school leavers to think about a career after they have qualified in their exams at further education in college or University. But with university courses and degrees becoming more widespread and the pass results being so high graduates need to think differently and look for their own unique selling point before heading off into the world of work.
This added USP could be work experience. A summer term in an commercial environment similar to that of the environment of a future place of work is such a great advantage on any CV. Employers look for commercial experience because they know that the Graduate already has some relevant skills to offer to the company.
There is also another use of valuable time at University or College and that is business startups. Many of the worlds top entrepreneur’s have started their empire whilst at University. Richard Branson started Student magazine in a basement on campus with a group of classmates and went on to create music stores, record labels and airlines under his now famous Virgin brand. Many others including Bill Gates, Microsoft and Steve Jobs, Apple and Pixar also started their hugely successful empire’s whilst studying at Uni. And let’s not forget Mark Zuckerberg founder of Facebook, a University social experiment that took the world quite literally by storm. Many, many others have started up businesses whilst resident in higher education and gone on to work full time in their own business.
University start-ups on the rise
So what is the lure for some to almost prioritize at the expense of their academic performance a shot at starting their own business whilst in higher education?
University and college Resources:
Having a vast network around you in University is an opportunity in itself. Experts, academics, professors, other students, other courses, student organizations and more or all at your disposal.
Course tutors are also well connected to other great contacts who in turn could help grow your business awareness.
Integrate your business into your coursework. It’s highly likely that that the course you are on is something that you are interested in right? So your business idea in theory could have a connection. By utilizing the resources on campus and the technology and the time you have to work on projects it’s worth speaking to a lecturer on ways to integrate your business whenever possible to your coursework. A double edged sword so to speak.
Student Discounts and Grants:
Free student software, heavy discounts on computers and other hardware, data lists, equipment and more. Student discounts should be explored – they are there for exactly this reason.
There are a couple of outcomes to starting a business whilst in University or college – BOTH are positive. You will either have the opportunity to qualify with high grades and dedicate your career path towards your business. Or you will have the opportunity to qualify with high grades and have a fantastic CV with your business project listed as commercial experience adding value to your qualification and adding the all important USP that future employers are looking for.