Should you focus all of your energy on your studies or would it be a good idea to start a business in college?

This was a debate that I had the other day with a friend. He argued that he doesn’t know why I’m working on my online business because he thinks that my spare time should be spent on my studies. I do agree that taking your studies seriously is important to success during and after college. However, I feel that you should work on starting your own side business in college for the following reasons:

Time.

Ask anyone with a family or a full-time job if they could have one wish granted, what they would ask for? I’m willing to bet the shirt off my back that they would ask for more time. Everyone desires more time. Thankfully, as a college student you have plenty of time. Now I know that some of you will curse at me because your school schedule is so packed that you rarely ever get to sleep 8 hours a night. You guys are the exception, not the rule. Most college students have plenty of spare time. We just don’t utilize it properly. We spend our time checking updates on Facebook and sleeping ridiculous amounts of hours. Once you start making money doing something you enjoy, you’ll find time. Trust me. I’ve almost been smacked by friends because I’ve pulled out my Blackberry to work on an article idea during a social event. I just love to help others with money issue. You too have something that you love to do.

You need money.

Everything else aside, as a college student you simply need money. Whether you need money to pay for tuition, student debt, or for beers, it varies from situation to situation. The bottom line is that you should strive to earn as much money as possible. If a typical college student job doesn’t fit your schedule, you can always begin working on your own (even at 3AM when you can’t sleep). Starting a side business in college is the perfect chance to earn some extra cash doing something that you enjoy.

Networking opportunities.

Regardless of what small business you attempt to start, you’ll meet some interesting characters along the way. From the shady people that will try to rip you off to the really established business owners that will help you out. These are all learning experiences that are valuable to go through in college. Some of the people you encounter will help you become a better judge of character in the future. Some of the people you meet could even help you out in the future with your job hunt if you decide to work in the corporate world.

Your conditions are solid.

Let’s be honest here, your living conditions in college will likely never be matched. When you’re working a full-time job in the future or raising a family, you won’t be able to pull out your laptop to work on a graphic design at 4 in the morning after being out all evening. I truly believe that the college lifestyle is the ultimate opportunity to squeeze in time to work on your own side business. It could be something as simple as running a blog to something as complex as renting out properties to other college students. At the end of the day I feel that college students need to take advantage of this unique time.

Do you think that college students should strive to earn money on their own? If not, please share why you feel this way.

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