With the rising cost of university fees and the increasing attraction of working for yourself, more and more people are turning towards entrepreneurship as an alternative to a university education. But is it the right choice? Timothy Armoo, CEO of Doodlar and guest writer for Startacus weighs up the pros and cons...
Start a business 1.Arguably less expensive. Figures show that the average graduate would leave with at a debt of at least £25,000. That's a staggering amount for a 21/ 22 year old who hasn't started working. But it’s not just the debt, it's the psychological feeling that comes with it; the feeling each month that a portion of your money is going to paying back for your education. Granted this only kicks in when you earn over a certain amount but can you really see yourself burdened with such debt? 2.Entrepreneurship is arguably more profitable. Following on from the previous point, it is unlikely that if you were in university you would be earning as much as you would if you had used that time to start a successful company. A choice has to be made whether to invest now and possibly reap the rewards later or use the time- 3 or 4 years- to build an empire which maybe sooner rather than later will profit you more. 3.Entrepreneurship is more fun! Well I think so anyway. With Fresher's Fair, and the social element to it, university is fun no doubt about it. Arguably however Entrepreneurship is of greater fun; the constant feelings that you are faced with different challenges and could create anything you want, anytime and anyhow you is very attractive to many entrepreneurs rather than the possibly mundane lifestyle of a university education.
1.The people you meet.
University is a place of self-discovery as well as establishing long term relationships. The world in general is becoming a world of "it’s not what you know, it's who you know" and university opens up the opportunity to potentially meet thousands of people who can help you in later years. 2.You learn much quicker. The common argument is that whatever is learnt in university can be easily learnt by reading books or something similar-after all, professors were not born with such knowledge. That's true but university speeds up the process of learning skills and knowledge which would help in building a better business. 3.Risk. In entrepreneurship, there are no guarantees. There is an emphasis to work incredibly hard to sustain your business and at any point, a slip-up could cost you your business. In fact, in economics the term entrepreneur is loosely defined as "someone who organises the factors of production having calculated the risk'. Now personally, we don’t agree with risk when it comes to youth entrepreneurship. After all what exactly are you risking? Family? Mortgage? Nonetheless, a university education since you’re are still in full-time education means that any falls or stumbles you may have are less tragic than you losing your whole business! My opinion? As is probably evident by now, the argument could go either way and it is unlikely we would ever get to an answer. When it comes down to what we think, like most things it’s a bit of both. A university degree doesn’t stop you from starting a business, it doesn’t have to. What it can potentially do is slow down your eventual success. It all comes down to you really doesn’t it? Would you rather jump right into the pool and swim against the tide or get your toes wet for some time while others swim?
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