Charleston is exploding with entrepreneurial activity, and College of Charleston students are fueling the fire. Later this week, several students will pitch their business ideas in front of hundreds at Dig South, the Southeast’s interactive festival. They’re hoping to woo investors and win start-up cash.
Will Jamieson ’16
Sophomore Will Jamieson has already secured venture capital funding for mobile app development.
RELATED: Sophomore founds company, launches apps.
Dozens of students have launched companies while enrolled at the College, and some of the region’s most successful companies are founded by alumni – look at Amazon-owned BiblioLabs.
“The support for entrepreneurial students, whether you are a business major or not, is abundant in Charleston,” says alumnus John Rizzo ’06, founder of GlobeOnDemand. “I was able to start a business seven years ago as a college senior thanks to the growing tech community, as well as resources and inspiration from leaders at companies like Amazon.com and Google. The College of Charleston made it really easy to tie in with hundreds of successful business people right when I landed on campus. Take advantage!”
In fall 2014, the School of Business will offer a new minor in entrepreneurship, as well as a course entitled “Entrepreneurship: Theory and Practice.”
“I know there are dozens of student entrepreneurs on our campus. In just one of my classes, I have two business owners,” says Professor David Wyman, director of the Center for Entrepreneurship in the School of Business. “The new course, and our Entrepreneur of the Year competition bring together students from all majors who are entrepreneurs.”
Wyman’s advice for budding entrepreneurs is to consider scalable businesses – the kind that can earn a profit while the owner sleeps.
“It’s not always the idea that makes a great start-up,” Wyman explains. “It is all about the team you have in place. It is very rare that someone can operate a successful business on his or her own. Find a diverse team that complements your skill set and supports your weaknesses, then find your idea.”
He says there is no typical business that starts on a college campus. At a previous institution, he had a student start a business growing mushrooms - it brought in $100,000. “Who would have guessed?” Wyman remarks.
For more information about the Center for Entrepreneurship, contact David Wyman at email@example.com or 843.953.5181.