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Center of Excellence in International Business
Mark Olchefske, Director

Lincoln Hall 123A
1200 S. Jay St.
Aberdeen, S.D. 57401

 
Phone: 605-626-7721
Email: ceib@northern.edu

 

 

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Entrepreneurial Studies

Q: Why should I get a minor or certificate in entrepreneurship?

A: If you want a higher level of control over your future, entrepreneurship is a great way to give you the freedom and livelihood to pursue your dreams. It is not for everyone, because being a successful entrepreneur is hard work; however, it is not difficult work.
 
 
Entrepreneurship represents a pathway to monetize a person’s passions — a set of skills to:
• Enable sculptors to make a living at their art
• Enable certified public accountants to open their own firm
• Enable someone who makes fishing lures to sell their product to the consumer
• Enable a psychologist to open a private practice
• Enable a merchant to distribute products to a target market
• Enable a high school or college student to create a new app or social networking site
 
Entrepreneurship is not typically an end in itself. It is really a way to make money doing what you love. That is why Northern does not offer anything other than a minor or a certificate. Plan to major in your passion and use entrepreneurship as an add-on—providing you with the tools to make a living at your passion. For the special few whose passion is the creation of         companies, they are worked with individually.
 
For those students motivated to complete a degree within a specific time frame, the           entrepreneurship minor is particularly well suited to business majors and the certificate is more appropriate for non-business majors. Non-business majors are encouraged to consider a minor, but it may require more time.
 
The key drivers of entrepreneurial success are:

• Perseverance
• Emotional intelligence
• Verbal skills
• Sales skills
• Marketing skills
• Financial literacy skills
• Financial analysis skills
 
Skills can be learned and are over-and-above any specific expertise in your major field.
 
There are successful entrepreneurs who did not study entrepreneurship. There are successful entrepreneurs who did not complete a degree—or even go to college. They still had to learn everything above—and in some cases, the hard way. An entrepreneurship minor or certificate provides the student with a structured grounding in the fundamentals of creating and growing a new enterprise. An education in entrepreneurship also provides the opportunity for application of that learning by trial-and-error without suffering the harsher penalties of the marketplace.
 
Successful entrepreneurs never want to go back to being an employee. The freedom to pursue one’s dream is too dear.