COVID-19: The Entrepreneurial Struggle of Running a Small Business

3 min read While most students face the daunting task of filling out applications and interviewing, others create jobs for themselves.

Woman sitting on porch with clothesline

Photo Credit: (Rianne Clark) Senior Rianne Clark, creator and owner of Tie Dye Ri, poses with her newest t-shirt creations.

948 views

By: Isabella Dominesey | Idominesey@radford.edu

Radford University students have taken the job market into their own hands by pursuing entrepreneurship.

With the price of tuition increasing every year, students often find themselves needing to find a job. While most face the daunting task of filling out applications and interviewing, others create employment for themselves.

These young entrepreneurs spend long hours creating products, turning their rooms into their workspace, and investing their own money into an idea.

“The Facebook group gave me the opportunity to offer something small for myself as well as the students,” Grochowski said.

According to studies conducted by the Universities of Sheffield and Exeter, people who work for themselves are considered happier than those with employers. For many student entrepreneurs, that proves to be true.

Senior Rianne Clark, the creator of Tie Dye Ri, much enjoys the freedom of being her boss. “I can do everything on my own time,” Clark said. “It lets me be in control of what I want to do for my own business.”

Small business owners also get to make their hours and choose when they want to work.

“I enjoy the flexibility of creating my own hours,” said Junior Sofia Grochowski, owner of a small Tarot Reading service. “I am able to work whenever I am up to the task and do not have to worry about providing subpar work because of a structured schedule.”

The element of complete creative control further appeals to people in entrepreneurship. “This allows me to make whatever changes to my services I want,” Grochowski said.

Student entrepreneurs have also begun utilizing social media to grow their businesses.

Chalkboard sign
Photo Credit: (Tim Mossholder) Some students are creating employment for themselves by starting small businesses.

Many have created Instagram accounts for their businesses, and some have promoted their services through Radford University’s Facebook pages.

“The Facebook group gave me the opportunity to offer something small for myself as well as the students,” Grochowski said.

Although working for oneself comes with many perks, there are also hardships facing small business owners.

“The hardest part of running my own business is possibly the late nights of working,” Clark said. “I’m always moving, thinking, and creating. Time can’t be wasted.”

COVID-19 has also played a role in the small business climate. Many businesses across the nation face economic difficulties, and over 100,000 have closed permanently since the start of quarantine, reported The Washington Post.

“The hardest part of running my own business is possibly the late nights of working,” Clark said.

Yet, for some entrepreneurs, the pandemic has helped expand their revenue.

“COVID has impacted my business in a quite positive way,” Clark said. “It let me grow and improve my business so much. Sales boosted, and people were more interested in Tie Dye Ri as a whole.”

Although creating a small business requires hard work and dedication, according to Clark and Grochowski, the benefits are great. “With being your own boss, you get to direct where you want to go with your business. It lets me use my imagination to build and grow,” Clark said.

For business inquires, you can contact Tie Dye Ri through Instagram @tie.dye.ri, and Sofia Grochowski can be contacted directly through Facebook Direct Message.