There has been a lot of entrepreneur organizations being founded since entrepreneurship has become a popular topic among students. Starting a business from such a young age, and cultivating a personal brand on social media has been becoming the norm among students. If you have a business idea in mind, it’s never too late or too early to start researching and planning for the development. Entrepreneurship is the process of identifying a business opportunity, which requires a lot of aspects, from knowledge to soft skills. If you want to learn more about starting a business, we’d highly recommend reading through this easy-to-follow step-by-step guide to help you start one right in high school.
If you have a strong solid idea and a great business plan, there are multiple entrepreneurship competitions that we have curated just for you! The competitions provide you the chance to be an actual business owner, where you bring your product to life through prototypes, and receive feedback from successful entrepreneurs in the industry.
In addition to competitions, a lot of students also decide to participate in business education or entrepreneur organization for high school students. The benefits that these organizations bring can range from professional training, business ideas competitions to networking sessions. They provide a variety of opportunities to enhance your learning and equip you with tools and knowledge, such as leadership skills, networking skills, and knowledge about the business such as finances and accounting, etc.
Today, we will provide you with 5 entrepreneur organizations for high school students and college students, on the national and international level.
1. DECA - International Entrepreneur Organization
DECA (Distributive Education Clubs of America) is an international entrepreneur association with more than 225,000 members in all 50 U.S states, Canada, Guam, Puerto Rico, and Germany. DECA’s programs and activities in business, entrepreneurship, and marketing have prepared students to become emerging leaders and entrepreneurs.
DECA has two student divisions: High School Division and the Collegiate Division. The High School Division includes 220,000 members in 3,700 schools.
Every year, DECA organizes multiple competitive events that match and are tailored to your personal and professional interests, with the commitment to allow students to be college and career-ready when they graduate from high school.
By registering for DECA members, you will have instant networking opportunities with more than 225,000 members across the globe, and access to alumni and working professionals in the field of your choice.
FBLA-PBL (Future Business Leaders of America – Phi Beta Lambda) is considered the largest career student business organization in the world, with more than 230,000 members. Future Business Leaders of America (FBLA) is the high school division and Phi Beta Lambda is the collegiate division.
As a member of the FBLA, you will have access to potential college scholarships, academic competitions, networking events, and awards programs. Competitive events range from 3D animation, business financial plans, business ethics, e-business to graphic design, social media strategies, and website design. FBLA-PBL offers a broad range of business and career-related events, so it’s not only limited to entrepreneurship and business.
FBLA-PBL has an online innovation center where students can submit ideas for improving the organization and vote on those ideas to gain leaderboard status. So for students who wake up every day with new ideas or new solutions to problems, this is a perfect platform for you!
3. BPA (Business Professionals of America)
BPA is is an international organization with 45,000 members across 25 states and Puerto Rico, and an international presence in China, Haiti, and Peru. BPA is committed to supporting students, businesses, and educators in achieving their own personal goals and professional success. There are 7 divisions within BPA, tailored to every demographic with interest.
BPA (Business Professionals of America) holds a national leadership conference focusing on leadership development, as well as competitions and awards. The BPA Workplace Skills Assessment Program hosts a competition called Workplace Skill Assessment Program. The program provides competitions in over 90 categories, such as finance and accounting, business administration, management information systems, management, marketing, and communications, etc. More information about the competitions can be found here
4. National Business Honor Society
National Business Honor Society is different from the other three organizations, as this organization is an honor society where only high school students in junior or senior year, and have taken at least three business courses with at least 3.5 GPA and 3.0 GPA overall.
With the acceptance into the honor society, students will receive information about career services, member perks, networking opportunities with fellow members and organizers, and more.
5. National Beta Club (focuses on leadership development)
National Beta Club is an organization for 4th to 12th-grade students in the United States. The organization is committed “to promote the ideals of academic achievement, character, leadership, and service among elementary and secondary school students.”
Every year, members of the National Beta Club have the chance to participate in different competitions, separated by division. Activities range from academic contests to quiz bowls to talent competitions. Conventions give members the opportunity to interact, share project ideas, and showcase their academic and leadership abilities. The participation in National Beta Club aims to help students develop their leadership skills, because leadership is the core component of entrepreneurship.
Having an entrepreneurial venture is a great start to develop a strong entrepreneurial mindset that focuses on problem-solving and creative thinking. Bill Gates or Steve Jobs are great examples of successful entrepreneurs, and we hope that one day, you will be the next one on this list with successful businesses. Above is the list of youth entrepreneurship organizations that you should consider participate in when you’re in school. There are also different youth entrepreneurship programs and summer programs that focus on teaching you the knowledge and skills needed to evaluate financial risk, how to run a small business, how to expand your product or service long term, and so much more!