What Do Entrepreneurs Do?

Not everyone with an entrepreneurial spirit goes to college, but it can be a major benefit. Imagine what you could accomplish if you mixed your creative thinking with some real-world education. Entrepreneurs need lots of tools available to get those ideas from the sketchpad to the marketplace.

Let’s start with a basic understanding of what type of business professional we are talking about. Merriam-Webster defines an entrepreneur as someone who creates and manages a business, such as a small business or scalable start-up. In other words, they are putting it all out there for a business idea they think will work.

The Chamber of Commerce reports that there are an estimated 17 million new businesses each year, and many will fail. Being an entrepreneur is a challenge, so having an education can put you on the right track.

What Degree Is Best for an Entrepreneur?

The question isn’t whether you could benefit from a college education, but rather which major is best for entrepreneurship. Consider the following bachelor’s and master’s degree programs offered by the University of Minnesota College of Continuing and Professional Studies.

Bachelor’s Degrees

1. Inter-College Program

The Inter-College Program degree tops the list of must-haves for entrepreneurs. It allows you to customize your education to your goals. Enrolling in this program gives you access to courses from over 100 disciplines from colleges throughout the University. Just pick and choose the ones that provide you with the education you'll need to support the future you envision.

2. Health & Wellbeing Sciences

The Health & Wellbeing Sciences degree program provides a solid foundation if your business plans involve the health care industry. As a student of this program, you will study biological, physical, and social sciences. You also can choose a focus for your study to ensure it follows your intended career path.

3. Information Technology Infrastructure

The tech-savvy entrepreneur might want an education that will give them a competitive edge in the digital world. In the Information Technology Infrastructure program, you gain real-world experience solving some of the more unique problems facing businesses today.

4. Multidisciplinary Studies

The Multidisciplinary Studies degree program allows you to combine your goals with any previous coursework you’ve done to custom fit your educational experience. This is a practical choice for the entrepreneur returning to school to complete their degree.

Master’s Degrees

5. Civic Engagement

This is a master’s degree program that can take you to the next level as a leader. It helps you learn to engage with a community and build leadership skills. It is a smart choice for someone with a bachelor’s degree looking to start a business focused on improving the world.

6. Arts and Cultural Leadership

The Arts and Cultural Leadership master's program allows you to specialize in the administration and business side of the arts. It is self-curated, so you spend your valuable time learning what is important.

7. Horticulture

A master's in Horticulture can provide the science and management expertise to help you run your own organic farm, greenhouse, or landscaping company. You can choose the courses that match your professional interests and goals.

Best Certificates and Boot Camps for Entrepreneurs

Maybe the investment in a full degree is not what you need right now. There are also certificate programs that can benefit the entrepreneur. Some offer semester-length courses for credit while others are made up of short courses that build up to a certificate in as little as a few months. Many courses can be taken online. Additionally, boot camps can offer concentrated skill-up opportunities.

Credit certificates with semester-long courses

8. Applied Business Certificate

Earning an Applied Business Certificate will help you stand out to investors when presenting your startup ideas. It allows you to take courses that interest you without making the investment required to earn a degree. You have the option to pick from three structured programs—applied business essentials; managing for sustainability, innovation, and quality; and managing health systems organizations—or design your own.

9. Information Technology Infrastructure

Learn the best practices of IT from a business perspective. The Information Technology Infrastructure program is a hands-on learning experience with six tracks:

  • Data Management
  • Data Science
  • Development and Operations (DevOps)
  • Networking
  • Security
  • Systems

Professional development certificates with short courses

10. Business Process Improvement

If you want to be an entrepreneur, then by definition, you need to understand business. The Business Process Improvement certificate program consists of four online courses. During that time you will learn the art of innovation and improving your work processes.

11. Organization Development

The Organization Development certificate program is just what you need to learn to motivate yourself and those working for you. The program includes five online courses that you complete on your schedule. You’ll hone your leadership skills and learn how to apply them to your organization.

12. Business Writing

The ability to communicate professionally is a must in any business. The five-course Business Writing certificate program helps you use your writing chops to get funding, inspire potential partners, and motivate your team.

13. Business Analysis

You complete six required online courses and one elective to get your Business Analysis Certificate. Once you do, you’ll have critical business skills that allow you to assess costs and implement technical solutions. This program bridges the gap between business and information technology.

14. Communications

The Communications certificate program offers a well-rounded education on speaking to others with authority. It helps you negotiate agreements and build business relationships. This primarily online course of study consists of seven required courses and three electives.

15. Leadership Essentials

If you want to succeed as an entrepreneur, you're going to need leadership skills. The Leadership Essentials program is primarily online and includes seven required courses and one elective. Once you earn your certificate, you’ll have skills necessary to lead with confidence.

16. Project Management

Learn the ins and outs of running a project from design to completion. The Project Management certificate program includes six required courses and three electives—all offered online.

17. Professional Train-the-Trainer

If you want to be the person who teaches others how to train, consider what this certificate program has to offer. You’ll learn to analyze the needs of trainers and implement them in a way that is engaging and interactive.

Head to boot camp

We also offer several boot camp programs to help you build your professional career. Each comes with access to a global network of employers and free career assistance.

18. Digital Marketing Boot Camp

In just 18 weeks, you can learn everything you need to know about digital marketing. You’ll also gain professional experience when you take advantage of microinternship opportunities. You’ll fast-track your career with this certificate.

19. Data Viz Boot Camp

Big data is big business. This boot camp training program will give you the skills necessary to put that data to use in decision-making.

20. UX/UI Boot Camp

In 24 weeks, you can learn to become an end-to-end UX/UI professional. It will even take you beyond UX/UI with a holistic design and web development focus.

Learn More, Today

Find out more about what the U of M College of Continuing and Professional Studies can do for you today!