Building a company from the scratch is no easy task, especially when you intend to do it when you are an undergraduate. This might seem like an impossible thing to do for a lot of people but it is definitely manageable. All you need to learn is the juggling act and prioritize according to goals. A lot of successful CEOs started young.
PayPal founder Peter Thiel, offered 20 teams of entrepreneurs under 20 a two-year $100,000 fellowship to fund their next big idea. College is definitely a great place to start a venture of your own. HackerRankÂ was started by college-mates Vivek Ravisankar and Harishankaran K to create an online platform to conduct mock interviews for campus placements at their college. It led them to conduct online programming tests for companies that wanted to hire software programmers. They were selected by what is arguably the world’s most respected startup accelerator programme, Y Combinator. HackerRank now is a community for programmers to connect with each other, test their skills and have fun.
Here is why college startups can work:
If you have an awesome idea and some huge company thinks so too, they will probably fund you easily. You just need to have an out of the box idea which is sure to work in the market once it is launched. BrainBought, brainchild of Rohit Sant, a student of BITS Pilani was funded by wishberry.in. They fulfilled their initial requirement of Rs 2.5 lakh through crowd-funding and becameÂ India’s first crowd-funded startup.
Most colleges these days have such programs to encourage their students. These programs have regular competitions where you can showcase your ideas and they are judged by experts. This helps you figure out how successful your idea can be or what loopholes have to be fixed.Â If you are a college student, there is no reason you should stop yourself from starting something new and innovative. You certainly have nothing to lose and ample time. The kind of help and resources you will find in college can probably be found nowhere else.
ECell DTU is one such organization. It was started in the year 2008, and it aims to bring together the entrepreneurial passions to converge on a common platform. The E-cells of all college have regular fests and summits which include activities like B-Plan competition, leadership lectures, case study workshops, and innovative games. These allow interaction among heterogeneous groups, such as corporations, working professionals and students from all across the nation.
Best place to form a team:
You will find the most amazing team in college; it is where like-minded people co-exist. Who knows, your friend could be your co-founder? People with various majors, backgrounds, passion make your search for the right team easier and smoother.
College is when you have abundant time on your hands; you have very less to do and no pressure at all. There is nothing to lose in college and no financial pressures exist.
The contacts with friends, professors and business owners which you make when you are in college are going to help you with your business and probably may become your customers as well. In other words your college could be one of the best market places to test your product.
Deshpande Foundation has the Leaders Accelerating Development program which strives to build problem solving and entrepreneurial aptitudes among university students. LEAD’s mission is simple and impactful: have students take up issues of concern and implement solutions in a stipulated time frame.
The Centre for Entrepreneurship and Innovation, IIM-C offers various entrepreneurship programmes for postgraduate students and people with work experience. The courses incorporate the current business realities of globalization and outsourcing. It also encourages projects on different aspects of entrepreneurship. CEI also provides direct support to prospective ventures by providing consulting services, helping in identifying opportunities and resource requirements, providing the necessary industry interface and arranging funds.
So, there is no excuse for college students with great and innovative ideas to not startup. College time indeed is the best time of anyone’s life and if you can actually execute your business plan, it can be the most exciting time as well. Taking the plunge early is a good choice since there is low risk and abundant resources.