Entrepreneurship is a concentration many business schools offer for individuals interested in starting and running their own business from the ground up. Entrepreneurship students learn the skills and abilities needed to conceive, develop, launch, and manage new businesses. Even though a degree in entrepreneurship isn't necessarily needed to build a profitable business, it provides the invaluable opportunity to learn in depth about what decisions contribute to successful small businesses and startups. Students can interact and build connections with like-minded students and faculty members who have launched both successful and unsuccessful ventures.
Successful entrepreneurial ventures stem from strategic thinking, planning, and negotiating. Students in this major are not only challenged to think creatively to envision and generate innovative business and product ideas, but they also learn to take into account financing, legal, and marketing aspects of startup businesses.
An entrepreneurship curriculum typically integrates all aspects of business, such as marketing, finance, operations, and strategy. A good program emphasizes experiential learning so that students can learn to adapt to real-world settings. Entrepreneurship students complete activities inside and outside of the classroom that will develop their leadership and team building skills and arm them with practical tools that will help them evaluate and ensure business growth.
A notable element of most entrepreneurship programs is the business plan competition. Many colleges and universities hold department- and university-wide business plan competitions that give participating students an opportunity to compete individually or in teams. Participants pitch their business plan in front of judges and investors for the chance to win thousands of dollars in awards that could finance their startup. Competitions give students access to mentors and potential clients, so even non-winners walk away with new connections and feedback to improve their plan.
Graduates of entrepreneurship degree programs are equipped with the leadership and management skills needed to launch their own business. Most students actually graduate with a business plan already developed, because it's usually a required project for capstone classes. Often students even have the chance to enter their business plan into various competitions. Graduates are prepared for career paths that require an entrepreneurial spirit, such as sales and marketing management and product development.