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FOR COLLEGE STUDENTS, START-UPS LOSE THEIR LUSTER

April 2004

April 1 2004 by Chief Executive


Four years after the dot-com bust sent countless young college grads’ dreams of becoming instant millionaires crashing to earth, the allure of working for a start-up has all but disappeared, a new survey finds.

When asked what type of company they wanted to work for after graduation just 2 percent said they hoped to join a start-up, according to the survey by SIFE, or Students in Free Enterprise, a nonprofit group that fosters partnerships between business and higher education.

The top choices among the 183 students, surveyed in March, were: going to work for small or medium-sized company (41 percent), a Fortune 500 company (38 percent) or a public sector agency (11 percent); or founding their own company (8 percent).

“In the late ’90s, it was not uncommon for students to skip graduation to start their own companies,” says Alvin Rohrs, CEO of SIFE. “Now, an economic cycle later, we are seeing more college graduates holding off on starting their own ventures.”

“Many of these students,” Rohrs adds, “realize it is important to learn through mistakes of a real world job prior to gambling on their own.”

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