Students are always in need of funds for their education, and business leaders have several resources available that can help students. Helping young people pay for their education gives you the chance to cultivate relationships that could lead to hiring some great employees in the future. It also raises your community profile because it shows you care about education. Helping young people pursue their academic goals is a worthwhile investment.
Consider Cosigning on a Loan
If you have a family member or friend getting ready to apply for loans, consider applying with them as a cosigner. This can help them get approved faster, and because they may unlock lower interest rates, the student can also save money over the loan’s life. By cosigning a student loan, it means the student is more likely to get approved as well.
Hire Part-Time Student Workers
One of the common mistakes startup owners make is not finding value in hiring age-diverse employees. A great way to help young people is by helping them earn an income. Students have tight schedules, so you will need to provide them with some flexibility, but they can still find time for part-time hours. You can give them a flexible schedule so they don’t fall behind in their classes. If you are close to campus, you might have better luck finding people willing to work. However, if the work that needs to be done can be done remotely, your location may not matter that much. You can advertise positions on local publications, job posting sites, and at college career fairs.
Allow Access to Scholarships
You can provide full or partial scholarships for those needing money for tuition. You could roll this into a corporate social responsibility program to give back to your community. You may limit the scholarships to locals in the area to make sure you are giving back to those who use your services, purchase your products, or support you. Offering scholarships to these people can raise your own profile, and it helps you foster a long-term relationship in your community. Think of a scholarship as an investment because of how it increases brand awareness, especially among those who may benefit from these scholarships. Take some time to consider what you would like the scholarship application process to look like and how you will award them.
Look to Work Experience Programs
Even if you don’t have the cash to provide scholarships, you can still look into work experience programs. Many employers are looking for work experience, not just academic knowledge, which means students may be looking for opportunities to put their skills to use outside the classroom. You can take part in a work experience program with the local college to help young people get the experience they need. Depending on whether or not you pay these workers, the students may be able to earn a little money. Young people in work experience programs are often placed in professional environments for a while so they can apply their skills and knowledge. It helps them get a job, especially if they are able to use the people they meet there as references.