Starting a business is a crucial part of our collective cultural fabric. We’ve all heard about the American Dream and the success that can come with creating a killer business idea and seeing it to fruition.
But how do you get there?
Learning about entrepreneurship is a great start. In fact, it might just be the best way for you to see all of your business goals come true.
When it comes to studying entrepreneurship, there are a lot of different places that you can choose from. Some colleges offer dual degrees to give students a wider breadth of knowledge in the business world. Others provide students with neat competitions formed to inspire students and their abundant creativity.
Every university will be a little different in its approach to entrepreneurship, but they will all be able to teach you the skills you need to succeed with the next great business idea.
Read on to see what the six best colleges for entrepreneurship are.
University of California Berkeley
When it comes to studying entrepreneurship, it will be hard to find a school that beats the University of California Berkeley. This university is a one-stop-shop for students who want to learn how to be their own boss.
The school has a program called the Berkeley Haas Entrepreneurship Program, which aims to teach students about the ins and outs of creating a brand-new business. One of the best parts of this program is that they offer grants, or seed funding, to students starting up new businesses. While the grants are only available to select students in certain areas, the chance for your student-started business to receive a $5,000 jump start is pretty amazing.
UC Berkeley also hosts competitions for student entrepreneurs, such as The Venture Capitalist Investment Competition. These events help students get an idea of how cutthroat the world of business is and offer them a chance to get some real-world experience that is often lacking in a classroom environment.
If you want to see your business idea become a reality, attending the University of California Berkeley is a great place to begin.
University of Indiana
At the University of Indiana, students can study Entrepreneurship and Corporate Innovation, a major that will help prepare them to succeed in making their own businesses in the competitive environment that is corporate America.
The University of Indiana’s entrepreneurship program is so good that it was awarded the 2023 Model Entrepreneurship Program Award. And businesses are taking notice of University of Indiana graduates, too.
According to the university, over 1500 companies hired graduates from the University of Indiana during 2021 and 2022 — and the starting salaries weren’t too bad, either. Students who got their business degrees from the University of Indiana had an average starting salary of over $70,000. In a competitive corporate world, that’s an impressive accomplishment.
While you might not be making that much if you choose to immediately go into business for yourself following graduation, you can count on having the skills to succeed in your business ventures should you attend the University of Indiana.
Cornell University loves its student entrepreneurs. So much so that they offer their entrepreneurship programs to students across the university.
If you’re a student looking to build your very own start-up, it would be hard to find a more well-equipped place to do that than at Cornell University. The college offers grants and funding for its aspiring business-owning students, co-working spaces to foster collaboration, and internship opportunities that give students the chance to work with a start-up outside the university.
The sheer variety of resources that Cornell provides its student entrepreneurs is amazing. One unique service the school offers is legal, accounting, and library services. These services are made to help students look beyond the idea of their business and ensure that they have all their Is dotted and Ts crossed when it comes to the nitty-gritty aspects of their business.
If you choose to attend Cornell to study entrepreneurship, you can be sure that it will meet all of your business needs.
University of Texas Austin
As one of the largest schools in the nation, students flock to Texas for a great education, cool student life, and good old Southern charm. And the University of Texas at Austin brings all of that and more to students who choose to study entrepreneurship.
The University of Texas at Austin has tons, and we really do mean tons, of opportunities for aspiring entrepreneurs. From the school’s commitment to innovative technology to providing grants for student business ventures, UT Austin seems to have it all.
Something else the school does exceptionally well in the world of entrepreneurship is inclusion. The school’s entrepreneurship program also works with The Kendra Scott Women’s Entrepreneurial Leadership Institute to help usher in the next generation of female leaders and break down barriers precluding women to enter traditionally male-dominated fields.
The University of Texas at Austin has a lot to offer students, so keep this school on your watch list for the best colleges for entrepreneurship.
Loyola Marymount University
For most students looking to study entrepreneurship, they won’t be able to begin their studies until their junior or senior year. There are all those pesky general education requirements to meet, after all.
But for students who choose to study business entrepreneurship at Loyola Marymount University, their education in business building begins from day one. This college also places a lot of emphasis on real world education, which is incredibly important in this field of study.
Students have the opportunity to participate in the Business Incubator, which is a semester-long course that places them in teams, guided by an advisor, where they can simulate the real-world challenges of building a business.
Loyola Marymount University also hosts a variety of events for students to show off their ideas. One such event is the New Idea Pitch Competition, which encourages students to share their ideas in a traditional elevator-style presentation to judges.
University of Arizona
The University of Arizona is known for a lot of things: its near-constant exposure to sunny weather, wild student life, and great business school. While the first two qualities of the school might draw you to Arizona to study entrepreneurship, UA’s awesome business school should be the reason you stay.
At the Eller College of Management, students are exposed to the best of the best when it comes to business education. The college offers students an incredible range of business majors to concentrate in, including entrepreneurship. The Eller College of Management is structured so that students can double major with relative ease.
This means that students are well-positioned to study entrepreneurship alongside accounting, finance, or marketing, for example. This dynamic approach to studying entrepreneurship – that is taking a more holistic view of the discipline and combining it with other areas of study – will help students graduate with the right skill to equip them for real-world work experience.
What should you look for in an entrepreneurship program?
So many of the universities on this list provide students with incredible opportunities to take their ideas from pen to paper. And there are many more schools not on this list that have great programs for students in entrepreneurship as well.
Each school will offer something a little bit different from the last one. There will be schools that put a higher emphasis on mentorship with industry professionals than classroom education and vice versa.
But when it comes to studying in this field, there is one component of your education in entrepreneurship that you absolutely should not pass on.
And that’s practical experience.
An enormous element of creating a business is actually doing it — putting in the hard work to sell your product or engineer a new technology. When you’re stuck in the classroom all the time, you won’t be able to learn the ins and outs of hands-on business management.
It’s important to look for a program that allows you to get the real-world experience you need to succeed as a business person. Whether that be through mentorship, competitions, or business incubators, it’s vital for students studying entrepreneurship to get real-world experience.
Entrepreneurship can be scary at times. Starting a new business can be uncertain and very risky, but when you have a program teaching you the ropes of starting your own business, the process gets a lot easier.
Lucky for you, all of the schools on this list have awesome entrepreneurship programs that are designed to foster creativity and innovation so that you can step away from school with a degree and fire in your belly to create something amazing.