"Don't Be Ashamed College Students, Profit Is Not A Dirty Word"
Society needs both non-profit and for-profit ventures
“Today’s college students tend to view business the same way they view underage drinking,” Assistant Professor of Economics Brian Brenberg writes in a Forbes op-ed. “Do it if you must, but don’t admit it in polite company.”
The perception of profit as greed has led to a false dichotomy. Non-profit jobs are synonymous with ‘giving back,’ while for-profit enterprises are viewed at best an evil to be tolerated. But the truth is, Brenberg writes, “Businesses have improved living standards all around the world, not by ignoring people’s needs, but by caring enough to create products and services that improve health and wellbeing.”
Brenberg points to companies like Global Easy Water Products Pvt. Ltd., which specializes in offering affordable water irrigation tools to farmers in India. Through its work, the company has helped farmers increase crop yields 30-70 percent while decreasing water costs 30-50 percent. In the process, the company helped raise farmers’ incomes by an average of $400.
“It turns out that making money means creating affordable, transformative technologies that fight hunger, alleviate poverty, raise income levels, preserve water and decrease infant mortality rates,” Brenberg writes. “You might even call it ‘giving back.’”
Brenberg concludes by encouraging parents and educators to “encourage our young adults to apply their talents and energy to private enterprise.” Society, Brenberg writes, needs both non-profit and for-profit enterprise, so profit need not be a “dirty word.”
Click here to read the full article on Forbes.com.
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