Communities across North Carolina are successfully incorporating youth entrepreneurship into their economic development strategies. Community organizations and educators are partnering to offer youth entrepreneurship camps that build entrepreneurial skills in youth. The article shows examples of how communities are recognizing the importance of youth involvement in economic development.
Many youth between the ages of 9 and 18 attend youth entrepreneurship camps across North carolina. A variety of camp activities include hearing from local entrepreneurs, utilizing hands-on activities to learn about their community, assessing their own skills, and creating a working idea. During the camp, youth complete activities that build creativity, teamwork, leadership, and financial literacy skills.
A remarkable trait of many camps is the partnering that takes place across the community to make the camps a reality. Several community partnerships include Community Colleges, Public Schools, local 4-H Cooperative Extension, and local Boys and Girls Clubs. Many camps are held on Community College campuses to help expose youth to the institution environment.
From the very beginning, camp participants are encouraged to “think like an entrepreneur” by being creative and taking perils. The business teams are encouraged to carefully consider what their community needs, what they do well, and what interests them. The teams quickly become competitive about in which has the most creative and sometimes most outrageous business solutions. Unfailingly, the adults who serve as judges for the final presentations are impressed by the creativity with the ideas, the excellence of the presentations, and the engagement of students.
Many communities decide to select a layout for their entrepreneurship camp and encourage students to generate a business around the theme. One theme camp was delivered by a partnership that included Carteret Community College along with the Core Sound Waterfowl Museum. With funding from the Conservation Fund, the College and Museum created an entrepreneurship camp that taught students about the heritage and history of Harker’s Island and also the local community. Campers created businesses that reflected this heritage, including a tool that would help boats stuck on sand bars, which includes a nature center which may offer guided tourdates. One student commented, “My favorite part was learning what it took to create a business and manage a checkbook.”
Many counties in western North Carolina are offering youth entrepreneurship camps to teach youth leadership and problem solving knowledge. Communities are beginning to understand the great need of partnerships and cooperation. Wilkes Community College partners with 4-H Cooperative Extension to offer Youth Entrepreneurship Camps in Wilkes and Ashe Counties. The camps combine entrepreneurship with growing industries in the region including advanced materials and sustainable liveliness. Students took part in a presentation by Martin Marietta Materials and learned on how composite materials are developed and investigated. They were able to handle and test materials such as being blast proof panels that protect U.S. troops. Through the theme camps students were encouraged to reflect on developing businesses that capitalize on the assets on their community.
Several counties are working together to give a regional youth entrepreneurship camp. Asheville-Buncombe Technical Community College allows the Young Entrepreneurial Scholars (YES!) Camp for high-school students the refund policy year started a Middle School Academy Camp for Middle school students. The Young Entrepreneurial Scholars (YES!) Camp requires interested students to submit a camp application and recommendations. Students who participate say hello to the camp with their own business idea that hope to are a real enterprise 1 day.
Many communities across North Carolina are making the decision to incorporate youth entrepreneurship in their economic development idea. Youth entrepreneurship camps build on the trend and arias agency jacksonville Arias Agencies careers (www.kiss-top.info) teach folks how to think like entrepreneurs and make up a community that encourages entrepreneurship. Students check out entrepreneurship as a career option, and learn entrepreneurial skills will certainly benefit them whatever their career choice. Youth entrepreneurship plays a role in economic development as community leaders learn tangible ways to get it to part of their larger strategy. Entire regions will benefit through the advance of more businesses and a better trained labor force.