There has been an exponential rise of teenage entrepreneurs. Even more now, they have become more business-minded and are venturing out into the market space. Aiding the next generation of great designers, Tom and Tracy Hazzard shed light on the ways 3D Printing can help teen entrepreneurs. They talk about its benefits and the new possibilities and opportunities it could open the young up.
Listen to the podcast here:
How To Help Teen Entrepreneurs
This is the Ask Us Anything segment.
It is anything education this week or educationally-related.
It’s a fun week. There is much interest in the subject.
As we’ve been out there checking out 3D printing and education and other things, we’ve also been involved in a lot of entrepreneurship conferences and programs. That seems to be what’s happening because a lot of entrepreneurs are the ones who are first using 3D printing. Its inventors, they’re prototyping and using it for lean manufacturing, no tooling, product testing and things like that. It’s come up that there are a lot of teen programs going on at many school districts and communities. We’ve had three of them contact us over the months. One of them is called NFTE and it’s in LA, but there’s a local one here in Orange County as well. Instead of somebody asking us a question, I asked myself this question, “How can 3D printing help these teen entrepreneurs?” I think that it’s an interesting concept and a good way for a teen to jump into 3D printing and a good reason to help them jump into it. Because if they’re already of that in a product way, an entrepreneur, not necessarily a service way.
We had a friend growing up who’s entrepreneurial and started a local lawn mowing service. We’re not talking about that type of thing.
It’s not a service-oriented, but it’s product-oriented entrepreneurship.
It’s an upgrade from somebody who started out with their corner lemonade stand, but now they’re going a little bigger.
If you have that, this is the biggest problem for them. You get a concept, you maybe are able to make a prototype or a 3D model and you demonstrate the benefit and a lot of them can enter into contests and awards and things like that. Many Chambers of Commerce and other entrepreneurship groups are sponsoring these teen contests and programs and boot camps and all these things. There are lots of opportunities there, but what do you do next? You’ve got an award-winning idea, but how do you make it? Here’s where the problem comes that they can’t make enough to do product testing. That’s when we’ve started to get these referrals. I think that there is an educational component that needs to happen in these entrepreneurship and 3D printing companies could go in and make some presentations to them. They have regular monthly meetings at many of these organizations and expose them to the benefits of 3D printing for low-cost tooling, for prototyping, for product design and initial product run anyway. If you want to test something out, you might need to make a run of it.
I’m thinking back to a few years ago when you had a retail store for tween girls and some of the products that you would carry by the register like these little hair scrunchie things with palm trees or something like that.
They flew off the shelf.
There were other little products like that and we’ve seen even some on Shark Tank of some young, youth entrepreneurs who have developed some products and taking the initiative to make them and sell them. They were all using traditional materials and either home craft manufacturing or small-run manufacturing. I think 3D printing opens up new possibilities and opportunities there.
Maybe even the exposure to it gives you an idea for a whole new type of product too. A way to differentiate your product, make it custom and make it personal. There are many possibilities with it. If you’re a 3D print manufacturer out there or if your service provider or software or whatever it is, you should take advantage of the fact that these organizations are there. They’re always looking for sponsors. They’re always looking for presenters. It’s a great way for you to get the word out about 3D printing and the benefits of it. These are the kind of youth who will have enterprising minds that are going to do something great with it.
If your youth, your kid out there is one of these types of people that you’re fascinated with their ideas and what they’re doing. You want to help foster that, you probably want to try to find one of these organizations in the LA area. NFTE is one of them.
They’re all over the country.
Reach out and look online. Hopefully, you’ll find one in your local area.
If you have any questions or if you want to tell us about your organization, we’d love to hear about it. You can come to our website or anywhere on social media @HazzDesign.
Thanks for reading. We’ll be back with another question on Education Week.
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