What Is the Best Degree for Young Entrepreneurs?

By Ryan Himmel

entrepreneur daily

Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

For young people like myself with an entrepreneurial bent who are about to enter college, currently enrolled or considering to which schools to submit applications, what is the best degree to prepare to be a founder? Some schools allow you to major in Entrepreneurship, but I'm not sure this is the best path to take.

It's impossible to say which college degree or major is best for future entrepreneurs. Believe it or not, some entrepreneurs never even attend or finish college and instead put their time and money into creating a business. While I generally disagree with that course of action, there are entrepreneurs who made the right choice in taking that path, though it's very rare. Still there are certain things you need to keep in mind while considering your degree and major.

What college, degree or major you decide on is not nearly as important as how you actually use it to develop into an entrepreneur. Sure, having Harvard Business School or Wharton on your resume can increase the number of opportunities for you in the future. But that in itself will not guarantee that you become a successful entrepreneur. Rather you need to hone in on the higher education opportunities that help you develop the major qualities to become a successful entrepreneur, such as courage, integrity, work ethic and accountability. You're most likely to develop these qualities when you learn something that interests and excites you.

My second piece of advice is to expose yourself to the business sciences, such as finance, accounting, marketing and business law. You don't necessarily need to major or minor in these areas, but it can certainly help to expose yourself to them, as they are key aspects to every business.

My last piece of advice is to be mindful of the future and particularly of the industries that provide the greatest growth prospects. Innovation in technology, healthcare, energy and education will provide significant opportunities to entrepreneurs in the coming years.

Ryan Himmel

Head of Financial Partnerships, Xero Americas

Ryan Himmel is a CPA and financial technology executive who has dedicated over a decade of his work toward providing solutions to help accountants and small-business owners better run their firms. Himmel currently leads financial partnerships in the Americas for Xero.

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