Student Entrepreneurship Competition for $3,000 Grand Prize Begins

Classroom business plan competitions for South Carolina students enrolled in entrepreneurship classes have begun this month on John’s Island and Daniel Island, SC. Each year, students work with their YEScarolina certified teachers to create a business plan for an idea they are passionate about. Through this program, students develop valuable business skills and tools to unlock their entrepreneurial creativity, and also receive the opportunity to compete against students from areas throughout the state. Class winners in the tri-county area advance to the Motley Rice Regional Competition on May 9th to compete for seed money and the opportunity to advance to the Mark Motley Foundation State Competition on June 17th. Winners are awarded prize money at each step of the competition, the biggest of which is the a $3,000 Grand Prize to help fund their new business venture.

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Judges, competitors and their teacher after St. John’s High School Class Competition on April 7, 2017.

The Friday, April 7, competition at St. John’s High School, sponsored by St. John’s Parish Rotary Club, and Tuesday’s competition at Bishop England High School, sponsored by the Rotary Club of Daniel Island kicked us off! Each competition had 1st, 2nd, and 3rd place winners earning $250, $150, and $100 respectively, as well as a spot in the Regional Competition for the top two. The winning St. John’s High School students’ business plans for KNAC and Jekobe’s Landscaping, and Bishop England winners’ for Smudgies and Charleston Reclaimed, will be presented alongside those of students from Summerville High School, Wando High School, R.B. Stall High School, West Ashley High School, Burke High School, Fort Dorchester High School, and North Charleston High School.

Class competitions are made possible by volunteer judges and generous local sponsors, including the TD Charitable Foundation, Paisano’s Pizza, First Tennessee Bank, Exchange Club of Charleston, Historic Rotary Club of Charleston, Rotary Club of Charleston – Breakfast, St. John’s Parish Rotary Club, Rotary Club of Daniel Island, Bank of America Charitable Foundation, and Glasspro.

This year’s competition will mark YEScarolina’s 6th year of empowering student entrepreneurs by helping them refine their business concepts to be competitive in the real world. Past winners have gone on to launch their businesses in South Carolina, and continue to make valuable contributions to our economy as its future business leaders, using the tools they learned while participating in YEScarolina’s entrepreneurship program and Business Plan Competitions. 

Judges, competitors and their teacher gather after the class competition at Bishop England High School on April 11, 2017.

Judges, competitors and their teacher gather after the class competition at Bishop England High School on April 11, 2017.

Charleston’s business community is encouraged to get involved with our city’s youngest entrepreneurs. Opportunities to judge the Regional & State Competitions are still available, and everyone is invited to attend the Student Expo at the State Competition, held at 11am and 4:15pm in the Beatty Auditorium, to learn more about the students and their businesses. Learn more about being a judge and sign up here. The Motley Rice Regional Competition will be held at the College of Charleston School of Business on May 9, 2017. The Mark Motley Foundation State Competition will be held at the College of Charleston School of Business on June 17, 2017.