Last month a new class of 11 young entrepreneurs, ranging in age from 11-18 years old, began their journey to become CEOs of their very own companies.
We would like to recognize this year’s YEA! class and future CEOs:
Lillian Bittle (Home Schooled)
Toly Chinn (Redlands Middle School)
Astreae White-Flint (Fruita 8-9)
Samuel Grover (Central High School)
Tyler Hill (Redlands Middle School)
John Miller (Caprock Academy)
Kellen Pifer (Fruita Monument High School)
Reigan Sander (Redlands Middle School)
Kael Sievers (West Middle School)
Jordan Smith (Redlands Middle School)
Zoie Whitesides (Redlands Middle School)
Over the course of the next 30 weeks, students will brainstorm a business idea, create a business plan, pitch that plan to investors, and then launch that business with the help of funding from investors! Throughout this entire process, the students will be learning what makes a business successful, what makes a business fail, the importance of networking, the similarities between very different businesses, and more! By the time these 11 students graduate from the program in April, they will have all the tools necessary to continue their businesses for years to come, or to launch another new business.
Last week, Reynolds Polymer hosted our 11 YEA! students for their first field trip, giving them a behind the scenes look at what it takes to run a thriving manufacturing business. Jessica Smith, Vice President of Human Resources at Reynolds Polymer, shared tips about breaking into the industry, how to overcome challenges and what skills it takes to keep a business growing. For the past three years, Reynolds Polymer has hosted our YEA! classes for their Cool Business Field Trip, as a part of their mission to help provide career exploration programs to students throughout the Grand Valley.
In addition to lessons inside the classroom, YEA! introduces students to all types of businesses through field trips as well as a variety of executive leaders through guest lectures and business mentorship. By engaging in this hands-on approach to learning through field trips such as this, students gain a real-world understanding of the dedication it takes to be a business owner.