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Seven in 10 teenagers say they are interested in starting a business of their own. Co-authors William B. Walstad and Marilyn L. Kourilsky report on findings from four major national Gallup surveys commissioned by the Kauffman Center for Entrepreneurial Leadership in their new book, Seeds of Success: Entrepreneurship and Youth. Because...
Seven in 10 teenagers say they are interested in starting a business of their own. Co-authors William B. Walstad and Marilyn L. Kourilsky report on findings from four major national Gallup surveys commissioned by the Kauffman Center for Entrepreneurial Leadership in their new book, Seeds of Success: Entrepreneurship and Youth. Because entrepreneurship is a significant contributor to the welfare of individuals and their communities beyond providing new employment opportunities and an expanded tax base, the co-authors of Seeds of Success sought to explore the entrepreneurial understanding and aspirations of today’s teenagers, the primary pool for tomorrow’s entrepreneurs and entrepreneurial thinkers. This investigation includes administering a survey to 1,008 teenagers ages 14 to 19 years old. In addition, the same survey was administered to three adult groups providing a basis for comparison. These adult groups include the general public, a sample of teachers in public and private schools teaching grades 1-12 in the United States, and small business owners. Six major findings from the surveys include: 1.Entrepreneurial interest among youth in the United States is strong. The primary reason for wanting to start a business was to “be your own boss and control your life.” 2.Youth held positive opinions about small business compared to large corporations. If given a choice, a majority of youth (as well as most of the general public and most teachers ) would rather be the owner of a small business than the manager of a large corporation. 3.There were many deficiencies in the knowledge of youth about entrepreneurship, business and economics. 4.Many youth felt there is too much regulation and taxation of business by government. 5.Youth showed a lack of knowledge of the relationship between entrepreneurship and the community. 6.More than three-fourths of the youth felt it was very important or important for the nation’s schools to teach more about entrepreneurhsip and starting a business. Because youth interest in entrepreneurship is overwhelmingly positive, authors Walstad and Kourilsky strongly encourage schools to take a closer look at curricula in response to the demand for entrepreneurship education by youth, teachers, the general public and the business community.
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