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How Young People Can Start and Grow Businesses

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How Young People Can Start and Grow Businesses

By Marie Johns, Former Deputy Administrator
Published: November 9, 2011 Updated: January 28, 2015

On Monday I met Ryan Poortinga, who owns San Diego Sky Tours in San Diego, California.  When Ryan graduated from college, he couldn't find a job, so he created his own job.  With counseling from an SBA resource partner, he and a friend started San Diego Sky Tours.  They give private, custom tours of San Diego by air.  The business has been so successful that they are already hiring their first employee and planning on expanding or even franchising.

Ryan is a perfect example of the next generation of entrepreneurs that are growing businesses and creating the jobs we need.  His story is proof that young people don't need to wait to go into business.  You don't need a business degree or backing from investors--all you need is an idea.

I was in San Diego for the first of SBA's Young Entrepreneur Series (YES) events.  We started YES to put more tools in the hands of entrepreneurs like Ryan, and let them know that no matter what they need, they have a partner in the SBA.  To get our economy moving again, we have to support the next generation of entrepreneurs.  YES is a way of doing that.

The San Diego event had a particular focus on young veterans.  Young people are coming home from serving our country in increasing numbers, and it is essential that they have every possible opportunity to start a business and take hold of the American dream.  I wrote more about what SBA and the Obama administration are doing to support veteran entrepreneurs in a post yesterday.

Today, YES heads to Ames, Iowa, for an event focused on rural entrepreneurs.  You can watch the event live at 6:00pm CST at www.whitehouse.gov/live, and read more about YES at www.sba.gov/youngentrepreneurs.




About the Author:

Marie Johns

Former Deputy Administrator

Marie Johns is a former Deputy Administrator of the U.S. Small Business Administration. 


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