Expanding Our Concept of Entrepreneurship - with Mentor Nicholas Pez

When someone says “Entrepreneurship,” several iconic titans of industry and modernization may spring to mind–Industrialist Henry Ford, Apple Founder Steve Jobs, or Bumble Founder Whitney Wolfe-Herd, to name a few. But sitting down with Mentor Nicholas Pez has helped us rethink entrepreneurship’s 20th and 21st-century connotations of seemingly unattainable celebrity status.

“I would say that entrepreneurship is something that has been around since the beginning of human history. And now it is getting a lot of fame because you can do really cool things that you couldn't really do a hundred years ago, maybe even 50 years ago.” Nicholas encourages us to expand our conception of entrepreneurship to include “millions of small business owners around the world” who are “entrepreneurs in their own way.”

He counts those who “make restaurants, small shops, or create new projects that aren't necessarily technology based” even those who spearhead “volunteer programs, and anything really that involves building a team from scratch, leading a new project,” under the robust global population of entrepreneurs. 

For those interested in becoming entrepreneurs in their own way, Nicholas is optimistic: “We have a lot of tools in our hands that even very young people can use to create very cool things.” Nicholas himself, who moved to the US from Lima, Peru a decade ago, and now is getting his Master’s at Stanford in Public Policy with a focus in Real Estate, uses such tools to research “the intersection between entrepreneurship, the creation of new technologies and the economy.” His primary question is: “What is entrepreneurship’s impact on the economy and what is the impact of government and policies on people or creating startups and new enterprises with technology?”

Nicolas has been a Curious Cardinals mentor for two years now, and is passionate about eventually working for himself and “building something out of something that [he’s] learned.” In his teaching, he combines his interests in policy, government regulations, the housing market, and opportunities for economy growth–adapting these intersectional interests to the unique passions of his students. In so doing, Nicholas wholeheartedly embraces and advocates for the idea that anyone, no matter their age, can become an entrepreneur “in their own way.”

Want to work with Nicholas or other mentors on Entrepreneurship and building a business from your idea this summer? Sign up here.

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