Teen Entrepreneurs Reflect on Skills Learned

By Jade McDuffie
Post & Courier
September 6, 2012

When Wando High School senior Erin Willis won $1,000 at the Motley Rice Charleston County Business Plan Competition in May, she invested the money into her business.

Erin started eBay Queen last year after taking an entrepreneurship class at school.

Erin’s business buys low-priced items on eBay and sells them back to eBay or consignment shops. She said that when she devotes at least 20 hours a week, she can make $500 to $1,000 a month.

She, along with Nick Sisk and Austin Nuttall, learned the importance of financial responsibility in an entrepreneurship class taught by Misty Rohaly, a teacher who received training from YEScarolina.

YEScarolina is a nonprofit organization that aims to teach youths business skills.

“Mrs. Rohaly and YEScarolina have helped me go from just a business idea to a full-fledged business,” Nick said.

Nick, a junior who just transferred from Wando to James Island Charter High School, won first place and $3,000 at the Mark Motley Foundation Statewide Business Plan Competition. His business, BlackstacksGear.com, sells and designs T-shirts. He, too, put the money he won back into his business.

Because Nick placed in the top two statewide, he and second-place winner Adam Zerbst of James Island will travel to New York in October for the nationals and a chance to win $30,000.

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