At the start of the school year, Collier County Public Schools launched an Entrepreneurship program for 11th grade students. Class assignments were focused on real-life business activities including the development and presentation of a business plan. Hodges University hosted these bright young minds as they participated in the first-ever Entrepreneurship Business Plan Competition and Showcase, sponsored by Collier County Public Schools in partnership with Junior Achievement of Southwest Florida and Hodges.
“Each school held in-house competitions to determine their top team of budding entrepreneurs who present their plan to the panel,” said Dr. Aysegul Timur, Program Chair with the Johnson School of Business at Hodges. “These are the best of the best, some of the brightest young entrepreneurial minds in our community, and as one of the showcase judges, I can’t tell you how impressed I was with their presentations. Their teachers should be commended for the excellent job they are doing in educating these future leaders.” Faculty from the Johnson School of Business have been working with several Collier County teachers showing how to teach business plans to their students.
During the event a team from each participating school presented and defended their business plan to a panel of judges. Each student on the team had to be knowledgeable of their plan and be able to answer questions as they presented. Each group had five minutes to present their business plan and then answered questions posed by the panel.
High schools represented in the competition included Barron Collier, Golden Gate, Gulf Coast, Immokalee, Lely, Lorenzo Walker Technical, Naples and Palmetto Ridge. The team of Brandy Borgas, Yerania Barrios and Darlene Perez from Lorenzo Walker won the competition for their “Bee Organic Natural Honey.” They took home a prize package that included internet marketing consultation and a financial planning workshop.