College student entrepreneurs understand the importance of having access to affordable, convenient food options. With busy schedules and limited funds, it can be a challenge to find meals that fit their needs. That’s why ramen has long been a staple in the diets of college students, especially those who embark on entrepreneurial journeys. Cheap, easy to prepare, and portable, it’s no wonder that ramen is a popular choice for busy students. In fact, many famous entrepreneurs like Steve Jobs, Jessa Alba, and Chris Sacca have talked about surviving on ramen noodles while starting out.

  • Steve Jobs: In a 2005 commencement speech at Stanford University, Jobs told the story of how he and Steve Wozniak started Apple in his garage and survived on a diet of fruit and ramen noodles. Jobs said, “We would go to the Good Earth [restaurant] and buy as many carrot juices as we could and then sell them to the other bad food places around town. We were living on a food stamp budget, but we were selling carrot juice for 35 cents a glass. We could buy a lot of food with that money, but all we could afford was ramen noodles.”
  • Jessica Alba: In an interview with Forbes, the actress and entrepreneur talked about her experience starting The Honest Company and how she and her co-founder survived on ramen noodles for a year. Alba said, “We were living on ramen noodles for the first year. We were so poor, we would buy the ramen noodles in bulk. We didn’t have any money. We were really scrappy. We were using coupons at the grocery store.”
  • Chris Sacca: In a tweet, the early-stage investor and entrepreneur recalled eating ramen noodles while working on his first start-up, which eventually failed. Sacca wrote, “I ate ramen noodles every day for two years while starting my first company. It failed. I still eat ramen every day. Success tastes better.”

At the UCI ANTrepreneur Center, we recognize the role that ramen plays in the lives of college student entrepreneurs. That’s why we are so excited to announce a new partnership with three top ramen brands: Tapatio Ramen, Aces Foods Sriracha Ramen, and Choi Premium Ramen. The partnership was tested in Fall of 2022 with 60 cases of ramen. The popularity of the ramen with students showed that this was a partnership worth continuing. We have recently renewed the partnership with 130 cases of ramen, showing the commitment of all parties to provide our students with the resources they need to succeed. 

“The UCI ANTrepreneur Center will now have a steady supply of free ramen for our students.” says Ryan Foland, Director of the ANTrepreneur Center. “We believe that this partnership will be a valuable resource for our students who can now enjoy a quick, affordable snack while they work on their businesses or attend our workshops and speaker series events.” 

As Chris Sacca famously said, “Success tastes better.” With free ramen at the UCI ANTrepreneur Center, we hope to help our students achieve just that. To ensure that the partnership is mutually beneficial, we have new ideas of how to help students engage with the ramen brands. First, we have agreed to ask our student entrepreneurs to follow the ramen brand on their social media channels in exchange for the free ramen. Additionally, there are three other ways for UCI students to get free ramen:

  1. Students can look for the ANTrepreneur Center booth on Ring Road, where we will have plenty of ramen. Each of the ramen packs has a QR code which redirects to where students can follow and engage with the respective ramen brands.
  2. Students can find ramen in the ANTrepreneur Center kitchen. All we ask is that they scan a QR code and follow the ramen brand on social media before they eat.
  3. When students play ping pong at the ANTrepreneur Center, they will find ping pong paddles and balls printed with QR codes. Students are asked to scan the codes and follow the ramen brand on social media

“I am thrilled to announce our partnership with the UCI ANTrepreneur Center. We understand the importance of providing affordable and convenient food options for busy students, especially those on entrepreneurial journeys. We hope that this will be a valuable resource for students as they work on their businesses and attend workshops and speaker series events,” says Carol Choi, owner of Tapatio Ramen, Aces Foods Sriracha Ramen, and Choi Premium Ramen. “We are committed to supporting the next generation of entrepreneurs and are excited to see the impact that this partnership will have.”

We hope that this ramen partnership will be just one of many resources we can provide to help our students succeed. Remember, every little bit helps when you’re trying to balance your studies, businesses, and personal lives. 

Visit the FREE Ramen webpage to learn more about this partnership. To learn more about the other resources we have to offer student entrepreneurs, visit the ANTrepreneur Center website. For the latest news and updates, follow us on CampusGroupsFacebook, Instagram, Twitter, and LinkedIn.