Young Entrepreneurs Academy establishes new site in Paso Robles
–The Young Entrepreneurs Academy is a program that works to, “transform local middle and high school students into entrepreneurial successes.” The academy has recently announced its new site at Cuesta College-North Campus piloted by the Paso Robles and Templeton Chambers of Commerce, in partnership with the Stronger Futures Foundation.
The program takes students between the ages of 11 and 18 through the process of starting and launching a real business or social movement over the course of an academic year. By the end of the class, students own and operate fully formed and functioning businesses, which may be carried on after their graduation from the program. The academy aims to teach students at an early age how to”make a job, not just take a job.” It is the only pre-college program developed by an entrepreneur, at a university, with support from a major entrepreneurial foundation, the Kauffman Foundation and the United States Chamber of Commerce.
“We are excited about launching this expansion and specifically chose Cuesta College because of its reputation for academic excellence,” said Gayle Jagel, the CEO and founder of the Young Entrepreneurs Academy. Jagel developed the academy program in 2004, while serving as the director of the office of special programs at the University of Rochester. In 2008, the academy “spunoff” from the University to create its own not-for-profit corporation, YEA! Inc. The program is currently introducing sites in colleges, universities and high schools across the country.
“We are so thrilled to be the next area in the nation to participate in the Young Entrepreneurs Academy,” said Executive Director of the Templeton Chamber of Commerce Sarah Maggelet. “This program will enhance business education for our students, and provide a unique, challenging, and fulfilling experience for all participants.”
“One of the most interesting components of the YEA! program is the actual ‘behind the scenes’ knowledge that local business leaders are able to share with students,” said Pam Avila from the Paso Robles Chamber. “This experience is something they will be able to apply to any field they choose to enter, and will provide them with the necessary skills to become future leaders of their industries.”
“The entire community is on board with the chamber’s plans to pilot the program in the fall,” said Jagel. “We encourage local business leaders to become involved with the program and to act as mentors to the budding entrepreneurs.”