Thirty aspiring CEOs are headed back to school after spending their summer developing business plans, creating marketing strategies, preparing budgets, and in some cases, launching businesses. These budding entrepreneurs were part of the Teen Creating Economic Opportunity (Teen C.E.O.) program of Mott Community College’s (MCC) Workforce and Economic Development division.
The program provides Genesee County youth aged 14 to 18 years old the opportunity to take a business idea and develop it into a business plan during the summer (June to August).
Teen C.E.O. focuses on entrepreneurial skills, abilities and attitudes; and prepares participants for what is required to become a part of the new economy. In addition to business basics, the program offers mentorship opportunities and job shadowing experiences.
“This is a wonderful opportunity for young people to learn how business works, and to get ready to take their entrepreneurial ideas to market,” said Robert Matthews, Associate Vice President for Workforce and Economic Development.
In addition to the summer program, a Higher Education Career Pathway plan is developed for each participant related to the area of business they have identified as their entrepreneurial interest.
A “Showcase” event culminates the program providing the students an opportunity to display their businesses to friends, family, area business owners and the public. This year 30 students presented their business plans in the form of an elevator pitch at the Flint Farmer’s Market on Aug. 22. Business proposals included a Doggy Day Care, beauty accessories company, and a hair braiding service.
“Many people who stopped by our Showcase had not heard of the Teen CEO Program before, but thought it was a great idea and even asked how to help next year,” said Louvenia Penigar, Program Coordinator.
The Teen CEO Program is made possible with funding from the Charles Stewart Mott Foundation