Even on the first day of a new quarter, there's a good chance that frosh is already talking about the startups they want to build. Away from the hustle and bustle of academic life, many students pursue their business ideas at various stages, from far-off dreams to multi-million dollar social networking sites. These budding entrepreneurs aim to find personal meaning and fulfillment through the development of innovative ideas.
Aadi Nashikkar ’25 is one of these startup students.
“Entrepreneurship is also the best way to share your vision of what life should be with the world,” says Plava, a recommendation engine and web app that matches user preferences with customized vacation plans. said Nasikkal, co-founder of .
Due to its proximity to Silicon Valley, Stanford University has had a strong pull toward entrepreneurship for decades. Students often have a variety of motivations when founding a startup, but most of them are focused on solving identified problems in society.
“Startups are exciting, and the variety of courses, clubs, and communities at Stanford fuel that feeling. I'm so happy to be involved with all the new technologies and companies that are being built,” Nassikar said. Ta.
Many entrepreneurs look to Stanford University's long list of successful startup stories (Google, Nike, Doordash, Netflix) as inspiration for new products and ideas.
“[Entrepreneurship] It's known to be popular, but it's more hidden than you might expect. You have to sniff around to find people who are fully committed, but they are here, and they are the next big thing,” says Atman Jahagirdar ’26, co-founder of AdmitYogi. I did. AdmitYogi allows university applicants to view the applications of successful students.
Similarly, FluxWear founder Nadia Ansari ’26 said she and her siblings often faced skepticism because of their age and the products they offered. That “made it difficult for others to quickly see its potential and value,” she said. FluxWear is a wearable technology startup whose flagship product, His SHIFT, uses neuromodulation to alleviate chronic pain and lower stress levels.
Entrepreneurship on campus is encouraged by the supportive environment provided by business-focused organizations and faculty. The Stanford Entrepreneurial Student Business Society (BASES) is one such organization.
BASES is an on-campus vehicle for business learning and development, focusing on programs that enable students to “Inspire, Create and Launch.” Throughout the year, the organization hosts interactive summits, workshops, and competitions for those interested in entrepreneurship. According to BASES Vice President of Startup Development Michael Sun ’26, these events allow students to network with other companies, chat with industry experts, and gain skills with like-minded peers. You can attach it.
In recent years, the rise of business-oriented courses has fostered the growth of a start-up culture on campus. These classes are aimed at a wide range of majors and encourage students to find startup opportunities in new fields, such as the Sarafan ChEM-H Undergraduate Entrepreneurship Program and his GSB Pathfinder Program.
The growth and expansion of entrepreneurship on campus has contributed to a multifaceted culture for student entrepreneurs of all backgrounds and interests.
Ansari pointed to student-led initiatives like wristbands and fizz, adding, “My passion for innovation and my desire to actively contribute to the campus environment is inspiring.”
But some have expressed concern that today's startup culture has veered toward unrestrained status-building and the pursuit of an “entrepreneurial” image rather than pure passion.
“I think the visibility and resume-building aspect of startups is encouraging more people than they should to call themselves founders and seek out and even receive funding,” Nassikar said. Ta.
Stanford University students also observed that new startups feel compelled to pursue rapid growth and quick acquisitions. Some attribute these shallow priorities to Stanford's history of startups going “viral” and then being acquired by larger companies. Ansari explained that this rapid development and acceleration towards sales can lead to the importance of creating impactful products being overlooked.
As Stanford's startup culture continues to evolve, student business leaders hope to increase the popularity of entrepreneurship and highlight its measurable impact for the betterment of society.
“[With startups,] “We're breaking away from the tradition of taking risks and creating things that help people, and I think we can do more of that,” Nassikar said.