Vermont’s Champlain College–a private, baccalaureate institution that offers professionally focused programs balanced by a liberal arts foundation–has created a brilliant program for budding entrepreneurs. It’s called BYOBiz, or “bring your own business.”
According to Burlington Free Press, 15 students started in the program this fall.
National Public Radio’s Marketplace says one student in the program, Ben Kaufman, 19, already has a million-and-a-half venture-capital bucks in his pocket. Kaufman makes and markets iPod accessories.
Students who bring their business to Champlain or start one there get flexibility with school requirements. But they also get active mentoring and regular meetings with Vermont business veterans. They help with everything from strategy to networking with venture capitalists.
College President Dave Finney came up with the idea. He hopes a strong presence of student entrepreneurs will stir the school’s intellectual ferment. “It unleashes people’s imaginations about what’s possible,” said Finney.



About David Burn

I wrote my first ad for a political candidate when I was 17 years old. She won her race and I felt the seductive power of advertising for the first time. Today—after working for seven agencies in five states—I am head of brand strategy and creative at Bonehook in Portland, Oregon.