Dante Heckel of Fort Dorchester High School Receives Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year Scholarship Award

YEScarolina traveled to Atlanta, GA last Thursday to attend the Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year Gala at the College of Football Hall of Fame. This annual event “recognizes entrepreneurs in over 145 cities in 60 countries who demonstrate excellence and extraordinary success in such areas as innovation, financial performance, and personal commitment to their businesses and communities”. In addition to recognizing established entrepreneurs and business leaders, the event also awards a scholarship to a young, rising entrepreneur.


This year’s winner of the EY Young Entrepreneur Scholarship Award for the Southeast region is Dante Heckel, a student at Fort Dorchester High School and alum of the YEScarolina program.


Dante spoke about his experience with YEScarolina, and the business idea that developed out of the time spent in class, PowerPax. PowerPax is a backpack outfitted with a portable charger for those on the go. He took 3rd place at the Motley Rice Regional Business Plan Competition last month, and will be competing again at the Mark E. Motley State Competition at the College of Charleston’s School of Business on Saturday, June 17th.


Mercedes Stone, YEScarolina Executive Director Austin Stone, Dante Heckel, Connie Heckel

The final round of the State Competition is open to the public, and all are invited. The event is free to attend, and will give attendees the opportunity to meet South Carolina’s future business leaders, learn more about their businesses, and watch them compete.