Thursday, April 14, 2011

Big Business at Age 15: Youth Entrepreneurs

It's the volunteer opportunity for any entrepreneur: help a high schooler start a business!

Have you ever asked yourself, “Why didn’t I start this business earlier?” 

Of course you have.  Every entrepreneur wishes that they would have started just a little bit earlier.  But as many of you know, the hardest part of entrepreneurship is the first step.  The plunge.  The launch.  It’s a scary time.  And maybe you could have been more prepared for it.

Youth Entrepreneurs is now giving you the opportunity to help future entrepreneurs start earlier.  This organization teaches free enterprise fundamentals through hands-on experiences and encourages students to start their own businesses, enhance their business skills for future career opportunities and continue into higher education.  And now you can be a part of the experience.

Youth Entrepreneurs is seeking business professionals in Kansas and Missouri to become business plan advisors for local high school students. In this economy, donating money may be difficult, but donating a few hours of your time is a great alternative. Mentoring can make a huge difference in inspiring a student to succeed in their future business career. As a business plan advisor, your guidance can help shape the future generation of entrepreneurs.

In order to learn more about Youth Entrepreneurs and the incredible mentors that have joined the organization, I talked to Emily Morrow, a Youth Entrepreneurs business plan advisor and HR generalist at CommunityAmerica Credit Union. 

“[Youth Entrepreneurs] is a routine mentorship opportunity that lets me touch the lives of kids,” she says.  “[This organization] gives them hope.”

At CommunityAmerica Credit Union, Emily has plenty of volunteer opportunities.  In fact, CommunityAmerica Credit Union donated over 3,500 hours of volunteer work last year alone.  But when it came to choosing her volunteer path, Morrow decided to work with Youth Entrepreneurs because it allowed her to provide students with innovation and forward-thinking strategies. 

“These kids have a passion for their plans,” Morrow says.  “I want to help them think outside of the box.  The kids have great ideas and I want to help them expand on them because it could turn into a real-life future business for them.”

Are you doing your part in the Kansas/Missouri community this year?  If not, this is your opportunity to get out there and enhance the lives of children and the world of startups.  Get involved today! 

Written by Allison Way.  Allison is a writer for Think Big Partners.  To read more of Allison’s work, check out the Kansas City Entrepreneurship Examiner and her articles on Helium, eZine and BrooWaha.  Follow Allison! @AllisonThinkBig

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