The week of June 21, 2010, brought the inaugural Entrepreneur-in-Training Camp, a commuter camp for high school students.
The summer camp was held at Indiana University of Pennsylvania’s
Eberly College of Business and Information Technology and was sponsored by Junior Achievement. Fourteen high school students from the greater Indiana area were chosen to participate. Working in teams of two, these energetic teenagers worked to make their fictional companies grow, prosper, and succeed.
By utilizing Junior Achievement’s high school simulation program, JA Titan, the Titan Business Challenge put high school students to the test as they managed and operated their own virtual businesses. Set in the year 2035, all the students’ companies manufacture a fictional product known as a Holo-Generator, a hand-held, lightweight device about the size of a portable CD player that is capable of generating 3-D images in the palm of your hand. Students competed against one another during practice rounds each day, and the top three teams were all awarded prizes, including an iPod shuffle, a digital camera, and iTunes gift cards.
The camp was kicked off by Ben Custer, an IUP ROTC representative. He led the students in a number of memorable team-building activities. In addition to utilizing the computer program and its corresponding lessons, students also heard from a wide array of guest speakers, Mike Remple, John Petina, and Andrew Kuzenski. Susan Nicholson and Joette Wisnieski both taught lessons. These speakers covered important business topics, such as marketing and financing, that the students applied to their virtual business decisions. Diamond Pharmacy Services was also kind enough to give the students a behind-the-scenes tour of their company. Many of the students remarked that it was their favorite aspect of the camp, and it gave them a different view of the small business world.
The final day consisted of a competition between the seven teams. They played the Junior Achievement Titan Challenge, making all six possible decisions including manufacturing, marketing, and giving to charity. While all of the teams were dedicated, three stood out as the winners. Anthony Kopczyk and Aaron Jones took first place, winning a Netbook computer and $125. In second place was Caleb Jobe and Rena Deitman; they both went home with portable DVD players as well as $75. Third place was taken by Kelly Risch and Rozh Ali. They won $50 and a $100 gift certificate to Best Buy.
By participating in the Entrepreneur-in-Training Camp, the students became well-equipped with the skills they will need to make headway in the corporate world. The Junior Achievement Titan Competition gave these high school students the rare opportunity to experience firsthand the reality of growing a business.