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Starting College? 10 Tips from a 20-Something CEO


Starting College? 10 Tips from a 20-Something CEO

At a convocation rich in pomp and tradition, Bentley University welcomed the Class of 2018 to campus August 28 with a words of wisdom from a digital age marketing strategist dubbed the “millennial master of the universe ” by Fast Company.

In a keynote video address to 980 freshmen from 36 states and 42 countries, Sharma Hyder, CEO of Marketing Zen Group and a participant in Bentley’s PreparedU Project, offered “10 tweetable tips” for students to make the most of their time at Bentley.

Foremost among them was an admonition to “embrace each day with passion and purpose” because “you only live once...or hashtag #YOLO.”

Hyder also advised students to:

  • Let curiosity be your guide. This is a brand new adventure. Join new clubs, explore new subjects, meet new people and discover new passions.
  • Create your own curriculum. Look beyond the classroom. Find professors who inspire you. Explore special events. Approach companies for internships.
  • Be resilient. You will face many challenges. Don’t dodge them. Use them as opportunities to tap your inner resilience.
  • Seek help when you need it. You are not alone. When you feel confused, uncertain or disheartened, seek out the mentors and peers to help guide you along your way.
  • Cultivate good friendships. Some of the friends you make in the next four years will last a lifetime. Make friends with people who are different than you. Appreciate and learn from those differences.
  • Have fun but “think hard before posting pictures from Spring Break.” In the digital age, what happens in the next four years will follow you around for a lifetime.
  • Manage time and money wisely. Always know how much you have in the bank account and how much time you can allot for activities outside the classroom.
  • Attend faculty office hours. Use them to ask questions, get help and build relationships. 
  • Remember that your parents are smarter than they realize. The sooner you realize that, the smarter it makes you.

 “Take advantage of the great resources and experiences Bentley has to offer and make the most of each day you have on this campus,” she said. “After all, this is your journey. You alone are responsible for your successes and your failures. From the great classes to special on-campus events, you have a world of opportunity in front of you. And, you get to decide each day what to make of that good fortune.

 “Although each day will bring its own set of challenges and hurdles, remember that you have the rare ability to choose your own adventure. Make it worthy of you and worthy of those who have supported you so far.”


David Rosen is a freelance writer. 

Learn more about Bentley’s PreparedU Project, which examines challenges facing millennial workers, the companies that employ them and the colleges and universities that prepare them.


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