Kim Coley ’13, owner of Coley’s Graphics, talks her decision to pivot from Biology to business

Kim Coley didn’t intend to be a business owner. For the first three and a half years of college, she focused all of her academic energy on studying Biology.

Everything changed when she started taking on odd jobs to earn some extra money, since being on the softball team made it hard to maintain a steady work schedule. She started designing cornhole boards with her grandpa—and suddenly found herself with a steady stream of clients. Coley added a Business Administration major and a Marketing minor to her transcript, and Coley’s Graphics was born.

“Getting my business degree at Lees-McRae helped me come out of my introvert shell,” she said. “It also helped me prepare for running a business on a day-to-day-scale. I had no idea how to run taxes or payroll or anything like that.”

Although Coley found a career before she even graduated, she advises current and future Bobcats not to spend too much time focusing on the future and to enjoy their current phase of life.

“Take full advantage of the four years that you have there,” she said.  

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By Travis Stanley, Emily WebbNovember 23, 2021