While the university may be a place to acquire knowledge for our future careers, it is also a perfect place to begin your entrepreneurship journey. Many renowned businesses we know today started on university campuses. The likes of Jobberman of Nigeria, Doughman Doughnuts (Ghana), Kente Master (Ghana), and dynamite clothing now dynamite impressions (Ghana) just to name a few and you can also do exploits on campus entrepreneurially. Four years, for some, six years is a lot of time to build something meaningful on campus, so take advantage of this golden opportunity. And remember to balance well your academics with your business.
Below are 10 business ideas you can consider starting while on campus.
1. Run printing and Editing services: As we may already know that university (tertiary) education is heavily dependent on handouts and other hardcopy course materials. Running your own small printing and editing business can just be the perfect business opportunity for you while on campus. An advantage of this business is that you would not need a huge capital to start with. You can start with a less expensive printer and scanner either second hand or brand new depending on what you can afford. Back when I was on campus (Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology, KNUST) I had some friends who were running this type of business. One particular friend was able to recruit others to join the business that even after his graduation the business was still running.
2. Cleaning Services: Although some may consider this business as demeaning and may underrate it, it is actually a very lucrative business. I must mention that no business is demeaning so long as you make money from it legally and without comprising your morals. If you still feel indifferent and unconvinced about the worthwhileness of this business, remember that the owner of zoomlion is one of the richest entrepreneurs in Ghana. You may start offering your cleaning service (room cleaning, laundry, office cleaning, etc) alone or involve some of your friends or even involve some of the young people in the university neighborhood who are looking to make some extra income. You can advertise your services by printing and distributing fliers around, and also use word of mouth to your advantage, tell a friend to tell a friend who will also tell a friend. The advantage of this business is that it doesn’t need a huge capital to start, you only need some cleaning detergents and some cleaning equipment and you are good to go.
3. Offer Makeup services: We currently in an era where almost everyone especially ladies want to enhance their beauty, and university ladies are no exception. Hence as a student on campus, you can take advantage of this opportunity by starting a makeup business targeted towards your fellow colleagues on campus. The caveat about this business, however, is that it is to some extent seasonal, particularly booms during the periods of matriculation and graduation ceremonies. I remember I had to pay about 30 Ghana cedis if not more for my graduation makeup. And the lady who was offering this service had a lot of customers that day so you can imagine the profit.
4. Photography and Photoshop: Pictures are able to capture and tell a perfect story that words may not be able to vividly express. And with so much advancement in picture technology, photography business has become more promising than ever. While on campus you may want to start a photography business if you are already having a passion in this area it is a plus. All you need is a good camera and if you need any technical skills you can seek help from your friends doing communication design because they have photography as an aspect of their course. This business also booms, particularly during matriculation and graduation ceremonies and you can extend your photography service to the university neighborhood weddings, funerals, birthday parties, etc. An example of students who started their photography business on campus, and have become a national sensation today is the duo Twins don’t beg, these guys are now celebrity photographers, but they started from humble beginnings on KNUST campus. Never despise the days of small beginnings!
5. Sell School Suppliers and other Accessories: Selling school supplies and other accessories could be a lucrative business venture too. The success recipe for this business is buying low and selling high. Your products could range from a wide variety of things like branded shito, shoes, phone credits, and clothing among others. I know a lady (Oga Apparels) at KNUST who produces branded lab coats for students in the Physical, Biological, and chemical sciences. Personally, while on campus I had a mobile money business and I must say it was a great experience.
6. Sell at Events: Selling at hall and faculty weeks, matriculation and graduation ceremonies and other events can also be your side hustle while on campus. You can trade in chewable and drinkables like Khebab, Sobolo, fresh yogurt, soft drinks, popcorn among others. You can also sell clothing, shoes, African prints, etc.
7. Organise Parties and Other Events: Organizing events like graduation and matriculation after-parties, pool parties, hall and week parties, fashion walk shows, and charging a gate or entrance fee is a good business or side hustle you may want to consider while on campus.
8. Errand and Delivery Services: Another campus friendly business idea is running a delivery business. Most students prefer to be in their hostel and order food and others. Since most of the small food vendors on campus for example the bread and egg seller, the gobe (beans) seller do not have room delivery service you can take advantage of this need by liaising between the vendors and students with your delivery business.
9. Assignment and Thesis Services: Once in a while, we all need some helping hand right? Maybe with data analysis, methodology, or literature review? A good campus business opportunity is to run an assignment and thesis business. You can talk to some teaching assistants about your business and if they are interested you can bring them on board. This will help you to provide quality service to your clients. One key secret to sustaining this kind of business is that you must maintain and take your academic integrity seriously. Try as much as possible to avoid plagiarism, copy and paste, and other academic malpractices.
10. Create a website (blog) or a youtube channel: If you are someone who likes to help others find solutions, then creating a youtube channel or a blog will be perfect for you. Choose a topic or something you are passionate about and write articles or record videos on it. The advantage of this is that you get to build your reputation while in school and also earn some money in the process.
Hope you find this article helpful? Kindly leave your comments and thoughts below. In case you want me to write about something, just indicate it in the comment section. Thank you!