Studying entrepreneurship at a young age benefits learners from different social and financial backgrounds as it teaches people to cultivate unique skills and to think outside the box. These crucial life skills include problem-solving, teamwork, empathy, and accepting failure as part of the growth process. However, existing entrepreneurship programs in schools are limited to the four walls of the classroom.
Zachary Sarf, the managing director of Create Every Opportunity, Inc. (C.E.O.), saw the urgent need for a competent and comprehensive program for high school students. He built his own business in college called FlipFlop, a travel company that focuses on a marketplace where users can buy and sell hotel rooms with each other. While FlipFlop was very successful, he had his struggles with starting the business. As such, he provides an avenue for young entrepreneurs to lessen their trials and errors in creating their businesses.
As a nonprofit organization, C.E.O. provides an after-school club that introduces basic knowledge about starting, growing, and maintaining a business to students. Through their sessions, the company trains the participants to be financial literacy experts.
The student-participants, to apply their entrepreneurial knowledge, can start banking on their business ideas with the company’s support. Connecting with mentors and other experts in the field, they can use the company’s extensive network of well-known business owners. For students to understand how to start with their business ventures, they can schedule counseling sessions with the company’s in-house entrepreneurial specialists. Furthermore, the company helps students seek investment opportunities, internships, scholarships, and so much more.
In turning the student’s conviction into action, the students are given access to the company’s private crowdfunding page that allows them to acquire investments and start growing their businesses. Each student’s profile on the page will include their stories, helping them connect with the team of donors and investors on a personal level.
At the same time, C.E.O. also encourages other individuals to donate to all the students’ business ideas. By voting with their dollars, the donors can become part of another person’s journey to financial independence. In the long run, the donors help these young entrepreneurs chase their dreams.
“C.E.O. envisions a financially inclusive world where people from all ages and backgrounds can hold the power to improve their lives through the world of entrepreneurship”, says Zachary. Passionate about helping people become financially independent, the company saw great potential in giving grants to high school students so they can become skilled entrepreneurs.
In fulfilling their mission of teaching a business mindset for each student, they plan to partner with several high school administrators around the country. They want to encourage all high schools to bring C.E.O. to their school. With the administration’s cooperation, the students will feel confident about joining a club that will teach them the skills of entrepreneurship and financial literacy. Each chapter will serve as a community for the youth to discuss their entrepreneurial dreams with like-minded individuals.
While the company primarily helps high school students in the United States, they also offer low-interest and forgivable loans to low-income entrepreneurs and students all over the world. They have created a considerable number of after-school programs with the help of their community. Considering their milestones, C.E.O. is effectively molding a future wherein economic independence is the norm.
Grow your business or become a donor by visiting their website.
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