Paths for Greenlighting Your Business While Finishing School

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  • Some of the most well-known businesses got their starts in the dorm room:

    • Microsoft
    • Apple
    • Facebook

    There are many different types of businesses started by college entrepreneurs (each one viable to just about anyone with passion). In all honesty, it’s not so much the business idea that’s important – it’s the drive you have to greenlight this goal while balancing your school work.

    The following are a few of the different paths to take to see your business get off the ground:


    Creating content is actually very easy especially if you’re already accustomed to writing reports, essays, and other papers for your college courses. If you have a passion for a topic (or industry) and put together a blog then you very well might strike some success in those early years.

    Over time, as you produce the content (which can be audio or video, too), you’ll start to gain those followers and build some great business relationships. By the time you finish your degree, you may associate with quite a few major authority figures that could turn into neat opportunities plus you can make some money on the side by selling advertising, promoting products, or soliciting services.


    The biggest hurdle you’ll find during those breaks is the job search. By the time you do end up landing a gig, the break is almost over and you’re back in school without much saved up.

    Since time is of the essence, I’d highly recommend that you seek out professional staffing firms for a few reasons:

    • They already have the contacts for people that need temp workers so it cuts out a lot of the job search time
    • The firms generally match you with work that is built around skill building, which does wonders for your resume later on
    • The better firms also have extensive learning centers that can work in junction with your classes to help you really understand the industry

    Spending some time doing temp work during your break lets you rub elbows with people of authority in your field. You also gain those important on-the-job experiences that’ll help with school work and when you’re finished with your degree. You can also take what you have learned and apply them to the two other paths in this article so it’s ultimately a win/win scenario.


    A portfolio site, basic knowledge of the industry, and a unique set of skills are all you need to get started with freelancing off to the side during your college years.

    There are a few monetary investments, too, but they aren’t too expensive:

    • Website hosting: $15/mo
    • Website theme: $30

    You could also choose to use one of the many free website creators like Wix or Weebly or simply use a freelance marketplace as your base of operations.

    Once you’ve setup your online presence (which should also include professional social media profiles) you can start cold calling/emailing businesses (or individuals) in your area offering services. Land a few clients here and there and soon you’ll grow your portfolio so you can up your fees. Before long you could use your freelancing as your main source of income to pay for college and always keep the thing running well after you’ve started your career.

    A Tip from the Experienced

    The work that I do, now, actually got its start while I was taking classes. I found that I actually had free time if I got the homework and projects out of the way. An hour here or an hour there between classes (and during the breaks) let me start my site and by the time I was finished with school I had a few clients that made it pretty easy to go from a dorm to a professional environment.

    It can be done and I highly encourage you give it a shot (just make sure you keep up with that work).

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