What effect is COVID-19 having on college kids’ emotions? For many, the global pandemic has left us feeling like we lack a purpose. After being sent home early from college, millions of students nationwide have lost access to the academic, extracurricular, and social resources that were once integral components of our lives. Furthemore, summer jobs, internships, and research opportunities that students worked so hard to arrange have, for the most part, been cancelled. A week with nothing to do can certainly feel directionless in itself, but when you’re staring down the barrel of four long summer months with nothing to do, the thought is almost unbearable.
In response, many students have begun to embark on entrepreneurial projects. Let me introduce you to Asher Early, the 19-year-old rising sophomore at Duke University and founder of The Egg. During quarantine, Asher dove into the literary world of entrepreneurship with notable books such as The Startup Owner’s Manual by Steve Blank and The Startup of You by Reid Hoffman. Passionate about the ideas and strategies he was learning about, Asher reached out to friends and family with the proposal of founding an entrepreneurial incubator composed of creative-minded college students.
Earlier this week, I had the amazing opportunity to talk with Asher over the phone about what The Egg really is, what their mission and goals boil down to, and why the work they are doing is important.
Asher defined The Egg as a platform that will: “make entrepreneurship more accessible to college students by providing them access to the necessary materials, mentorship, and hands-on application experiences needed to launch their ventures with confidence.”
The Egg team aims to increase their own knowledge about entrepreneurship, share their most compelling findings with a broad audience, and provide a network for entrepreneurial-minded students to connect with one another. This type of work is extremely urgent now more than ever, as innovation not only has the potential to increase exponentially, but also because innovation is absolutely required given that life as we know it has changed drastically.
What makes The Egg so interesting given recent circumstances is that within a few short weeks, Asher was able to assemble a group of 12 close friends to group quarantine for the summer in order to turn this idea into a tangible reality. A typical day living with The Egg team begins with a wake-up call right at 9am. At 10am, the team assembles for a morning briefing, reviewing goals and projects that need to be accomplished by the end of the day. Some of these projects include producing social media content, working on web design, writing blog posts, and connecting with other business professionals and entrepreneurs. By mid-day, each member is encouraged to take a break by getting exercise, reading, or just hanging out. The rest of the afternoon changes per day based on a rotating schedule. The Egg makes use of their time then to pitch new ideas to each other, host guest lectures over Zoom, examine case studies, and even apply their expanding skillset to their own individual ventures.
With the recent launch of their Instagram (@the.egg.la) and website, The Egg is ambitious, organized, and already growing quickly. They say adaptability is the key to success… Asher and his team of college entrepreneurs prove this to be true as they are an example of a creative solution to the tough obstacles COVID-19 has presented. Through formulating a clear set of goals, The Egg serves as an inspiration of commitment to a project that strengthens our society by extending a helping hand to students everywhere, reassuring those students that anyone can be an entrepreneur. Go check out The Egg on Instagram for regular content updates!
If you liked this article, check out our podcast episodes: Hashem Montasser – Build Your Passion Project and Erica Huss & Zoe Sakoutis – The Future is Fungi