In the Spotlight - Jared Potash '16
It’s not unusual for a son or daughter to follow in mom or dad’s footsteps when it comes to what they do with their lives – whether be it a career, work in the community, schooling, and so on. What is not so common is for a grandchild to follow in the steps of a grandparent. But Farmingdale senior Jared Potash ’16 is doing just that, digging a little deeper into the family tree than most young adults. The result: being inspired by his grandfather, which led him into his current life path as a budding entrepreneur.
“My grandfather ran a chain of successful hotels on Long Island for a large part of his life,” Jared says. “He had a demanding schedule due to being in business, but it rubbed off on me to follow in his footsteps of running a company. “
Jared has followed in grandpa’s footsteps alright, and now is sprinting toward completing his business management degree and firing up his brainchild –called Inkterprise.
Yes, grandpa inspired Jared, but he credits FSC with giving him the tools to help bring that inspiration to fruition.
“I decided on enrolling at Farmingdale State College because I knew they had a growing and thriving business program. The college is one of the top reasons I started this company. I have taken classes in marketing, entrepreneurship, accounting, and business development, all which have played a strong role in the daily operations of the company. “
Jared has also been helped by interning at the campus Small Business Development Center.
“I learned how to launch a business from conception to a reality, and wanted to do so for myself.”
The result is Inkterprise, a company that produces screen-printed and embroidered clothing and accessories such as T-shirts, sports jerseys, resort wear, headgear, backpacks, totes – even garment bags.
“Inkterprise was created to fill a demand,” says Jared. “I’m surrounded at college by plenty of organizations that utilize custom apparel. I have always had an eye for clothing, but things fell in place for me more so as a student at Farmingdale.”
The business launched in a highly competitive environment last October, with the ambitious goals of going international, and making enough money to do something near and dear to Jared’s heart: giving away his products.
“I have always had this mindset to do nice things for other people. There are way too many companies that are overly money hungry. If you’re making a profit from your business, there is nothing wrong with giving to the less fortunate. My company will have the mindset of ‘doing what is right.’ I will look for places that are in need of clothing, whether local or global.”
And how is Jared dealing with the competitive aspect of the business, which is both national and international?
“I differentiate my company and brand by several different marketing techniques. I believe the best way to drive sales to any business is through advertising. I tell my clients that when they get apparel from me that they are a ‘walking advertisement.’ People see your company name, phone number, and anything else you would like to advertise to the public. Many print shops focus solely on prints; I provide high-quality prints and apply my business background to brand the business.”
Now, if you think Jared’s academic career may have suffered because of all the time he puts into Inkterprise, guess again. He has been on the Dean’s List, which, he says, has given him the drive to reach even higher – echoing Farmingdale’s motto.
“Although things do get challenging running a business and going to school at the same time, it keeps me on my feet and more competitive to succeed.”
Success certainly seems within his grasp. Jared, how would you advise other FSC students on how to achieve what you have so far?
“If I can offer a bit of advice to business majors who plan on starting up their own business ventures, it would be to plan. I was in the planning phase for months before I took action. Crunch your financial numbers, make a plan, register with the state, and run with your idea. I realized over the past few years that if you put your mind and drive into something, you will achieve it. Farmingdale State has all the necessary things to get your company off the ground, and I am positive others with the drive to succeed will do so. Run with your idea, and never let someone get in the way of your vision!”