At The Young Entrepreneurs Academy (YEA!), today’s dreamers are tomorrow’s leaders.
The Young Entrepreneurs Academy (YEA!) seeks to mold middle school and high school students into bright, confident entrepreneurs. The program, founded in 2004, partners with Saunders College of Business at the Rochester Institute of Technology to give students hands-on business experience at an early age.
The 26 week program allows students ages 11 to 18 to pursue business endeavors, conduct research and formulate business plans. Students attend after-school classes geared towards learning the ropes of running a business, giving them an edge on future competitors who have yet to become familiar with the world of business until their collegiate years.
YEA! is available to students in more than 168 communities across America as well as international chapters in India and China.
Towards the end of the program, students must pitch their business ideas before an investor’s panel in hopes of receiving a fund to start their business. The competition starts at a local level with winners proceeding to the national competition.
Judges are allotted $6,000 to divide between competitors, adjusting the awards to meet the needs of each student’s business.
The Valdosta- Lowndes chapter’s first- place winner of the 2019 YEA! Investor Panel Pitch Event was 13- year old Caleb Hunter.
Hunter received a stipend of $850 to fund his business Estate Xpsoures which provides local businesses with aerial photos of their estate through the use of drone technology.
Hunter advanced to the 11th annual YEA! Saunders Scholars national competition in Rochester, New York to compete with students from across the nation, India and China for a chance to win $30,000 scholarship, a trip to attend the U.S Chamber of Commerce 2019 Small Business Summit in Washington D.C, and the title of America’s Next Top Entrepreneur.
YEA! Seeks to help young entrepreneurs develop culture and character while providing them with entrepreneurial skills that are guaranteed to help them thrive in the real world. YEA! is a great way for students to pursue their dreams and utilize their creativity while building the confidence needed to run a business.
The Valdosta- Lowndes Chamber of Commerce proudly participates in YEA for a third year.
Applications are available through Sept 8th. Students in the Valdosta- Lowndes area and from surrounding counties are strongly encouraged to apply. For more information and access to the application visit yeausa.org or contact Betty Morgan, vice president of Business Development at firstname.lastname@example.org.