Eastview students attend summer business program

Four Eastview High School students attended Minnesota Business Venture this summer to improve their business skills. From left, Akarshna Iyer, Sanjana Reddy, Bemnet Kika and (not pictured) Harita Duggirala developed a business plan proposal for a hypothetical product or service. The students worked together in teams called “companies” to create plans for the marketing, finance and operations needed for their business. Photo submitted

Imagine yourself making a presentation to a panel of investors, asking for a loan for an innovative new business idea that you came up with in four days with a team of people you had never met before.

Sound challenging?

That’s exactly what more than 300 students were tasked with this summer during their week at BestPrep’s Minnesota Business Venture.

Eastview High School students Harita Duggirala, Akarshna Iyer, Bemnet Kika and Sanjana Reddy attended MBV this summer to develop their business and career skills.

Students split into small groups called a “company” and were mentored throughout the week by local business professionals from companies such as Allianz Life, Ecolab, Securian Financial and Travelers. Student “companies” spent the week developing a business plan proposal and summarizing the marketing, finance and operations practices for their fictitious product or service. While the business plans and monetary investment were imaginary, the ideas presented would give today’s entrepreneurs a run for their money.

A few product ideas included contact lenses for individuals with color blindness, a GPS sticker to track lost objects, a water purifying sponge and virtual reality for youths in hospitals.

MBV is a business and career skills camp held each summer in partnership with the Herberger Business School at St. Cloud State University and the Donald McNeely Center for Entrepreneurship at St. John’s University.

The opportunity was made possible through sponsorship from Xcel Energy, Donaldson Foundation, U.S. Bank, Fidelity Bank and Cargill.

“MBV is a unique opportunity for high school students to gain skills that will help them now and in their future. Going through a mock interview, learning about finances, working in a diverse team, communicating with adults and peers and speaking in public are all skills that help prepare students for success in school and future jobs,” said MBV program manager Amanda Labo.

BestPrep’s Minnesota Business Venture has more than 11,000 program alumni.

Learn more at www.bestprep.org.