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Demystifying entrepreneurship

It's a good time to be an university-based entrepreneur in Illinois! Why? According to the 2023 University Entrepreneurship Index, 62% of university-supported startups founded in the last five years (433) are still active. But, being an entrepreneur while balancing a full academic load can be challenging. We've compiled a list of things to keep in mind as you navigate your entrepreneurial journey at UIC!

1. Start with your passion

Identify what truly excites and motivates you. You don't need a groundbreaking idea to start your entrepreneurial journey. Begin with a small project or service that aligns with your interests. It could be a freelance gig, a student-run club, or an e-commerce venture. The key is to gain hands-on experience and learn from the process.

2. Leverage UIC resources

Take advantage of UIC's entrepreneurship programs, partner memberships, incubators, and mentorship opportunities. Not sure where to start? Check out the Student Entrepreneurial Pathways programming or attend a CEO meeting - we're all here to help. The Spark Innovation Hub is UIC's online resource to help you get started.

3. Set your intentions

Being an entrepreneur might require a shift in your mindset. Cultivate skills such as critical thinking, problem-solving, and adaptability. Understand the basics of budgeting, marketing, and customer relations. These skills will serve as a solid foundation for your entrepreneurial endeavors. UIC programming such as the College of Business and Administration's Entrepreneurial Support Program is a great place to sharpen your skills.

4. Be bold

UIC Innovation is here to help. Don't be afraid to take a big swing - we're right alongside you.