Earning money the
i old-fashioned way
Teen venture capitalists
: parlay slogans into big
; By FHLEC1A P. McMILLAN
- COMMUNITY CORRESPONDENT
Twenty-one eager young entre
preneurs completed the R.J.R.
i?Young Entrepreneurs Business
?Camp last week.
? Juan Casimiro, a certified
Tentrepreneurship educator and
[?executive vice president of
I KidsWay/EDGE, was the camp
1 instructor. The camp was funded
rby the R.J. Reynolds Tobacco
[-Company Foundation. Vivian
[? Turner, president of the founda
\ tion and director of contributions
cand community affairs, worked
[-Closely with the campers and the
?^instructor. Benjamin Ruffin, a
retjred vice president of corporate
.-affairs at R.J. Reynolds and chair
of the University of North Caroli
na Board of Governors, was the
' keynote speaker.
The participants in the pro
gram came from local youth ser
vices such as The Best Choice Cen
'?ter, Save Our Students, the Hous
' ing Authority of Winston-Salem,
Winston Lake YMCA and the Sal
vation Army Boys' Club.
The students completed 40
hours of class work during the
week by attending classes from 8
a.m until 4 p.m. daily.
The business camp culminated
- with an awards ceremony, venture
capital competition and trade fair
' last Saturday in the R.J.R. confer
ence room. More than 100 sup
porters attended the event.
"I was really pleased with the
turnout for this first camp and for
the closing program. We plan to
follow up on these students
because adults who participated in
' the training will serve as mentors
to help the students develop their
plans," Turner said. "We are trying
to give kids some tools to go out
where the big fish are."
Casimiro recognized Hodari
Turner, 19, who has begun his own
Turner serves as the instructor for
youth who want to open their own
"Hodari will "put me out of
business in Winston-Salem, but
this is what we want. Regardless of
background, every child should
have the opportunity to learn
about entrepreneurship," Casimiro
Casimiro cited staggering sta
tistics about the plight of minori
ties in America. According to his
research, "37 percent of African
American children live in poverty."
He also said that "50 percent of
African American and 30 percent
of Latino adolescents live in one
parent families....Homicide is the
number one killer of minority
males; one out of four minority
males is dead by the age of 25."
For Casimiro, entrepreneurship
is a major step towards a solution
to these ills.
"We continue to be a reactive
society, but local entrepreneurship
can offer solutions," he said.
Local entrepreneurship can
create jobs in the community, ful
fill consumer needs, create wealth
in the community, recirculate
money within the local community
and allow companies to give back
to the customers who help them
succeed, Casimiro said.
KidsWay is a unique hands-on
learning experience designed to
teach young people "real-world"
"We have taken concepts and
skills from typical MBA programs
and simplified them so that young
people can understand them."
Each member of the class
received real venture capital to
actually start a business. Students
had to choose a name and slogan
for their business, design business
cards, create a company poster and
a marketing plan. In addition,
they prepared a commercial, and
developed a 20-page business plan
as well as learned to read the Wall
At the closing ceremony, each
student received 500 business
cards, a card holder, a watch to
help the student to be punctual, a
T-shirt and a certificate of partici
pation. Parents were required to
assist the students in opening a
bank account with funds earned at
the trade fair, and students are
encouraged to invest cash awards
they won as prizes.
All of the participants designed
a business plan for their specific
products and services, and each of
them was given S25 to use to pur
chase products from a catalog that
the student could market during
the trade fair. Kerry Dunlap of
Bust the Limit T-shirt and Jersey
Co., sold $75 worth of merchan
dise at the trade fair and won the
award for Best Sales Person.
' Five venture capital finalists
presented their business plans to a
panel of judges from the commu
nity in order to secure jnvestment
capital for their businesses. The
judges included Sandy Miller
Jones of Segmented Marketing
Services Inc.; Joe Watson, owner
of WSMX and manager of
WSNC; Evelyn Acree, city execu
tive of Mechanics and Farmer's
Bank; and David Shannon of
J.D.L. Castle Corp.
Elizabeth Crawford, the daugh
ter of James and Jackie Crawford,
claimed first prize of $175 in the
venture capital competition. Craw
ford, 14, serves as CEO of "Sweet
Teeth," a dessertery for which she
designed a business plan. Her slo
gan is "If you feel the need for
something sweet, come to Sweet
Teeth, and we'll have your treat."
Casimiro awarded Crawford the
"Eye of the Tiger" Awqrd during
the ceremony. "This award goes to
the most valuable entrepreneur
who has a good attitude, is on
time, who takes risks, displays dis
cipline and uses appropriate
behavior." Casimiro said.
Along with this award came a
$50 cash prize.
The second place venture capi
tal award of $150 went to Daniel
Harris of J's One Stop Bike Shop.
His slogan is "I'm- better than
Mike, so bring your bike and ride
with pride." Third prize of $125
went to Lenwood Thompson 111
and Daniel Harris of Chndatious.
On their poster, they cited "low
prices, local sites and friendly ser
vice" as strong attributes of their
business. Fourth prize of $100
werit to Nakia Lentz and Minet
Carter, partners in Top Notch
Style. The slogan* for their hair
salon is "Where getting your hair
done is worth the while."
Fifth pri?e of $75 went to
Shannon Martin, Lauren Douthit
and Shaquana McNair of SLS
Babysitting. Their poster included
the palms of three hands, and their
slogan is "Your child is in good
Hodari Turner distributed the
other special business awards.
James Britton of James' Cleaning
Services won the award for the
most artistic poster. Jamaria
Bunch of The Works key chain
business had the most creative
flyer. The best commercial came
from Joshua Crowell, 7, of The '
Garbage Company. Ian Horsey of
See Money on A11
Antonio Jonas, Artillery Kolley and Ian Horsey of The Home of Computers hawk their wares to Henry Porter during lost week's trade fair.
Porter is the parent of a camper.
' ' V <?
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