Many young entrepreneurs recognize that high school and college years are the best times to launch a business. They are surrounded by resources such as teachers, professors and other school-affiliated mentors.
They have access to the knowledge of these mentors, as well as a wealth of information inside their school libraries. In most areas, local businesses and organizations recognize the talent in young entrepreneurs, and offer funding to students who exhibit promise and present feasible business ideas. With the help of this funding, it is possible for students to launch a business before they even receive a diploma. This is possible even more in this age of technology, where online commerce is so readily accessible.
Licensing Executive Society Foundation
In an annual competition held by the Foundation of the Licensing Executives Society, students compete for a grant of $10,000. To enter, students must first show judges that they understand why intellectual property is an important component in a business strategy.
Throughout the competition, competitors network with the members of the foundation and learn essential business strategies. Judges assess each student’s submission of a business outline that must emphasize intellectual property. Before the final ceremony, a select few competitors travel to London for a convention hosted by the foundation.
Edson Student Entrepreneur Initiative
Arizona State University offers local students funding for businesses through the Edson Student Entrepreneur Initiative. The University awards grant money ranging from $5,000 to $20,000 to ten or fifteen teams of young entrepreneurs.
These teams consist of up to five members and are headed by a student currently enrolled in college or graduate school. Although non-University students can be on a team, they cannot be the leader. Ideally, each member should have a different major. Each team must already run a business. Judges decide the winner after listening to presentations from each group.
Green Bay Youth Entrepreneur Grants
Young entrepreneurs in the Green Bay, Wisconsin area can take advantage of grants provided by the Green Bay Area Chamber of Commerce. The Chamber provides grants up to $500 to middle or high school students that wish to run a business over summer break. Students must live in close vicinity to the Green Bay area.
In order to apply for a grant, students must compose a business proposal. Local organizations such as the Small Business Council offer help to these applicants. The Commerce offers grants to students who attend any of the ten school districts within the Green Bay region. Students must submit their applications in time for the April deadline.
Global Student Entrepreneur
Available to students internationally, The Global Student Entrepreneur Awards distributes grants to young entrepreneurs in university, college or high school. In order to be eligible, a student must already run a profitable business that has brought in a return on investment for six months in a row. Judges base their decisions on the strengths of each student. Ideal candidates show leadership skills, innovation and strong character. Awards go out throughout the year, and vary in amount.