Launch your career as an entrepreneur

By John Rodriguez 
Pulse Staff Reporter

Fellow Entrepreneur Annamaria Malara at the Dell Women's Entrepreneur Network event in New York City
Fellow Entrepreneur Annamaria Malara at the Dell Women’s Entrepreneur Network event in New York City

Learning the basics of entrepreneurship can help students take that first step onto a new career path.

An entrepreneur starts a business and is responsible for ensuring its success. Becoming an entrepreneur is an idea that has crossed most people’s minds. The process of self-employment and entrepreneurship seems difficult at first glance; however, it is not impossible.

Brian Cruz is the CEO of the Charles London Group and has 15 years of entrepreneurial experience dealing with prefab home building. He said that the first step is to have a passion for what you’re doing and be willing to take on many different roles in order to accomplish necessary tasks.

Passion and willpower are only the first step, though.

Knowledge in many different fields, both related to business and to your specific field of interest, is also absolutely necessary. Being able to identify and follow through on trends in order to promote growth in your business and bring in returns and, more importantly, experience, is what being an entrepreneur is all about.

“The first huge hurdle you’re going to have to overcome is understanding a budget surplus, understanding the dynamics of lending, of monies,” said Cruz. “That’s a huge hurdle to overcome in the beginning.”

Samantha Plasencia is PAC alumna who became a fashion designer and visual artist. In late 2014, she was featured on Project Runway. She emphasized the importance of using social media in order to reach out and build an online presence.

“Building a network is important, so social media is an important deal, even if it’s something you don’t care to do. Just by social media, I have met people from all over and landed my private casting for Project Runway. I also sometimes do giveaways or give a small gift to people who order from my site. It’s that small extra something that keeps the clients engaged, whether it’s a handwritten note or item,” Plasencia said.

However, sometimes you need to be more direct.

Oscar Gonzalez is another PAC alumnus. In 2008, he created the locally based video game news website Original Gamer and has been operating as its primary reporter and editor-in-chief ever since. He recommends bolstering your client base by contacting them directly via their websites.

Gonzalez said, “Send them a quick introduction email and let them know what you can do for them. Let them know that you’re offering a service to them. You’ll likely not hear anything from them, depending on the size of the company, but they may contact you right away.”

This forward approach quickly brings you and your services to the attention of people who matter to you. Otherwise, you can lose out on support early on, especially if you don’t yet have a strong online presence.

PAC offers degree plans in Business Management, Business Administration, and International Business for students interested in entrepreneurship. Check with your counselor to see if these degree plans are right for you.

For students interested in other aspects of entrepreneurship, various online resources are available to the public. These include entrepreneurship.org, entrepreneurship.com, and kauffman.org.