Future Looks Bright With The Mindset of the 2022 YEC Participants

Future Looks Bright With The Mindset of the 2022 YEC Participants

As students from Chris Strathman’s MHS Entrepreneur Class gave their presentations during the Youth Entrepreneurship Challenge (YEC), “it was refreshing to learn about their generosity and commitment to a healthier environment” commented Debbie Hawkinson, McPherson Chamber of Commerce Executive Director.

As a NetWork Kansas Entrepreneurship Community, the McPherson Chamber of Commerce organized the YEC on December 14th as an opportunity to encourage entrepreneurship and community engagement. The Youth Entrepreneurship Challenge includes an executive summary, 4-minute presentation, and a tradeshow booth. All three parts are scored by local businesses people. Special thank you to our YEC judges for their thoughtful comments and encouragement.

“It takes creativity and courage to develop an entrepreneur business plan and pitch their ideas,” but the students did just that. Whether it was putting their passion for art into a service business, developing a business around their favorite clothing style, or creating a mobile service to accommodate specific clientele, each business plan was unique. Some students accommodated food allergies for baked goods, offered healthier options in jams, and prepared fresh dried herbs for teas that are used for better health. All terrific business plans. In addition to healthier options, another business focused on eco-friendly clothing, and several pledged to give a generous amount of their proceeds to charities. “I am so impressed with this incredible group of entrepreneurs and their inspiring and committed business ethic” said Hawkinson.

The Peoples’ Choice winner (voted on by all who attended the tradeshow) went to Gavin Wedel and Asa Keough with Green Threads. They won a gift certificate compliments of Bob’s Golf Club, 112 N. Main. Gavin Wedel and Asa Keough with Green Threads also took home prize money and bragging rights for 3rd place in the 2022 YEC. Second place in the 2022 Youth Entrepreneurship Challenge was awarded to Ella Bushbom and Aley Brown with bApplE bakery! The First-place winners of the 2022 YEC are Payton Schlicht and Cristian Garcia with MCW. Payton and Cristian are also eligible to compete in the State Entrepreneurship Challenge. Congratulations!

Hawkinson encouraged all the entrepreneurs to seriously consider starting their businesses in McPherson County. She said that the YEC judges, E-Community Committee, local business owners, and the McPherson Chamber is more than happy to be a resource.

The McPherson County Entrepreneurship Community loan program was created through the Kansas Center for Entrepreneurship Tax Credit Program and Network Kansas. The program is administered by the McPherson Chamber of Commerce to encourage entrepreneurial activity in the communities of McPherson County. Contact the McPherson Chamber at 620-241-3303 for more information.