The Valdosta-Lowndes Chamber kicked off its third year of the Young Entrepreneurs Academy (YEA!) on October 15th with a record breaking 17 students! These students, ages 11 to 18, have a keen drive to launch and run their own, real business and represent Valdosta City Schools, Lowndes County Schools, Open Bible Christian School, Valwood School and Cook County High School.
Throughout the year, students will work in close cooperation with local business leaders, community leaders and educators. These individuals use their personal experiences to demonstrate how to develop business ideas and objectives, write a business plan, pitch to investors, obtain funding, register with governmental agencies, establish e-commerce and a web presence. By the end of the academic year, students own and operate fully-formed and functioning businesses, which may be continued after their graduation from the program.
“The Chamber is so excited to offer this forward-thinking program,” expressed Betty Morgan, YEA! Program Director. “We believe in providing the means to encourage these young students to embrace their creativity and passions and hope that empowering them at such a young age will inspire them to do even greater things in the future.”
Classes are held every Tuesday from 5-8pm at Valdosta State University’s Langdale College of Business and instructed by Vicki Layne.
The YEA! students will continue their classes through the spring and finish the year with a “Shark Tank”-style pitch in front of an investors panel and compete for real start-up money.
None of this could be accomplished without the support of local businesses. Local businesses have embraced this program, providing all 17 students with scholarships.
For more information on the Young Entrepreneurs Academy, contact Betty Morgan at 229-247-8100 ext 234.