Enroll Your Teen in an upcoming BizCamp!

 

Do you know someone between the ages of 13 and 17 who is showing signs of being entrepreneurial in nature? Enroll them in an upcoming summer BizCamp.

 

The Youth Entrepreneurship Initiative (YEI), in conjunction with the Department of E-Commerce, regularly leads the highly-rated BizCamps, utilising the award-winning curriculum from the Network For Teaching Entrepreneurship (www.nfte.com). The programme is designed to cultivate the entrepreneurial mindset in our future business leaders, inspiring them to launch their own businesses.

 

At BizCamps, participants develop the necessary skills and receive active mentoring to help them turn their interests into viable business ideas. They will have the opportunity to:

  • generate business ideas using their passions and skills,
  • perform basic business finance analysis (costs, price, revenue, profit, budgeting, taxes),
  • learn how to effectively market and sell products and services,
  • connect with successful Bermudian entrepreneurs, and
  • write a basic business plan that they will present to a panel of judges. Top finishers will be selected for awards.

Joe Mahoney, Executive Director of the YEI states, “The goal of our BizCamps is to inspire young people to hone their business-savvy and learn one of the many ways to become economically self-sufficient. Participants are provided with a business plan template after they learn the fundamental concepts. They then compile their own business plan, based on specific information regarding their own business idea. Last but not least, they present the final product to a panel of judges selected from the business community who will provide them with feedback geared towards building an even stronger business plan. This allows them to earn certificates for participating in the programme.”

 

Held most recently during the 2017/18 spring term break, two BizCamps provided budding entrepreneurs with the opportunity to develop their business savvy. During the 2016 BizCamps, which were previously held in the summer, top business plans were:

  • Farm Express, presented by Chefanices Williams from the Berkeley Institute,
  • Sugar & Spice Bakery, presented by Cusheah Smith from the Bermuda Institute, and
  • Princess Parlor Day Spa, presented by Angel Seaman, also from the Bermuda Institute.

 

Local entrepreneurs and development partners make sure to attend BizCamps as teachers, presenters or judges to present real-world practical applications of the concepts taught during the week. Jamillah Lodge of the Bermuda Economic Development Corporation customarily acts as a BizCamp judge. She states: “It is such a rewarding opportunity to see what the future of Bermudian entrepreneurship looks like. I look forward to meeting each of the participants at every BizCamp and to hearing them talk about their entrepreneurial passion.”

 

Parents continually express their appreciation for the growth witnessed in their children as the programme progresses. In a letter thanking the BizCamps teachers and assistants, Ms. Seaman expressed her hope that Angel would be able to participate in additional enterprise development programmes. The YEI’s response was a resounding “Yes!” and has referred Angel to Start-Up Weekend, an initiative fostered by the Bermuda Economic Development Corporation and the Department of ICT Policy and Innovation, formerly known as the Department of E-Commerce[1].

 

Since its inception in 2002, the YEI has directly served over 860 students through the intensive week-long programmes. It believes that training young entrepreneurs is a sustainable solution to the ever-evolving needs of the market by creating dynamic, responsive, and cost-conscious individuals. The refinement of business skills leads to the growth of leadership abilities in the youth, teaching them to take the initiative for change in their own lives and communities. Training, technical assistance, and mentorship are, without a doubt, the most important steps to successfully empowering a young person to overcome nearly any challenge.

 

The Department of ICT Policy and Innovation has, year after year, supported BizCamps. Says the Director, Dr. Marisa Stones, who is also a regular BizCamp judge: “The BizCamps are a highlight in our yearly calendar. During the week, we see firsthand how ideas blossom into business opportunities. The programme leverages technology and mentoring to get participants from identifying what they love to do into making it a viable money-making possibility. Every year, I am impressed in what is accomplished in a single week.”

 

There is no entry fee for students who are accepted to attend BizCamps - thanks to the support of faithful sponsors including the Department of ICT Policy and Innovation, the Bank of Bermuda Foundation, Partner Re, Tokio Millennium Re, the Argo Foundation and One Communication.

 

Electronic applications are available at www.bedc.bm in the “Upcoming Events” section. Alternatively, applicants may send an email expressing their interest to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

 

Applications are reviewed as they are received and the first 12 qualified participants are admitted for each session.

 

Whitney BlueBird Write Up parents magazine

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