Startup Generation Wants Students to Work at Startups, Not Just Start Them

November 13, 2012

11:00 am

Starting a company when you’re young is becoming increasingly popular. But it’s not for everyone – nor is getting a regular, 9-5 job after college. Startup Generation wants to offer a third option to students: working at startup jobs.

“I think more entrepreneurs should do that,” says cofounder Danny Beckett Jr., who leads Startup California. “We’d have less people failing in startup companies because of lack of motivation or lack of drive because it was like, holy shit, I just didn’t realize how much work it’s going to be to start a company.”

Startup Generation is basically a job board that connects students with startups. Students can create a profile for free, and startups can post jobs and search for candidates based on their skills. Inspired by startup fairs at Stanford and Harvard, Startup Generation will be launching in-person startup fairs in Los Angeles around December. Startups will pay for a booth, as well as job postings on the site.

According to Beckett, the economic climate in America has helped create a “startup generation.” Growing up, young people were advised by their parents to go to a good school and get a good job. But this generation watched as their parents lost their jobs, and their own after-college futures became uncertain. Startups suddenly became a more attractive option.

Beckett himself could have benefitted from choosing the “third option,” but he dove right into a few companies, and picked up some failures and losses along the way.  “I look back and I wonder, ‘Could I have worked at a couple startup entrepreneurial companies, and could I have gained a lot of really good perspective, maybe made some really good relationships, learned a lot, and really decided if that was what I wanted to do or not?’”

He cofounded Startup Generation along with Zac Campbell and Forest Pett, who are both 21-year-old students at Chapman University. Having both interned at startups, they realize how educational it can be.

Educational, thrilling, and perspective-changing. Sounds a lot like college, but with much less debt. Look for Startup Generation fairs in cities nationwide in 2013.

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Kira M. Newman is a Tech Cocktail writer interested in the harsh reality of entrepreneurship, work-life balance, and psychology. She is the founder of The Year of Happy and has been traveling around the world interviewing entrepreneurs in Asia, Europe, and North America since 2011. Follow her @kiramnewman or contact [email protected]

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