BY: JESSICA GUTMAN
Students in the Knoxville Chamber’s Young Entrepreneurs Academy (YEA!) have finalized their business plans and pitched their ideas to a panel of investors for start-up funding.
Since early October, these middle and high school students from across Knox County have worked to build their own businesses from the ground up. Beginning with idea generation and market research, the students moved into prototyping and business plan development and are now finalizing brand identity and presentations.
During the weekly classes, students have learned about opportunities and skill sets needed to be an entrepreneur from their instructor, Haseeb Qureshi, guest speakers and field trips. The class had the chance to visit Local Motors’ state of the art micro-factory and learn about advertising while visiting local digital marketing firm, Pyxl.
The YEA! students will graduate from the program on Tuesday, April 17.
Hannah Rodriguez, Clayton Bradley Academy
Hannah Ashton Content – provides a personal online mentoring course that trains You-Tubers, influencers or anyone wanting to grow their social media channels. She offers a personal connection with the flair and knowledge of running Hannah Ashton YouTube channel for over five years.
Mentor – Cody Quillen, Knoxville Graphic House
Daniel Scrugham, Homeschool
InvestRight Media – teaches young people how to invest their money and help them beat the stock market through a fun and enjoyable weekly podcast, which is only fifteen minutes per week.
Mentor – Ariana Shannon, Your Growth Expert
Hunter Bumgarner, Maryville High School
TN Martial Art Events – hosts martial arts parties for children where they are taught a fun and energetic martial arts class, celebrate with their friends and even cut their birthday cake with a sword!
Mentor – Josh Goldman, Power Systems
Luis Gomes, Bearden High School
ScribeTogether – aims to bring communities together by connecting writers, educators and students all in one place. ScribeTogether is a new tool for the community to freely write with other people and have fun with it, while also taking a step closer to their personal writing goals.
Mentor – JD Samples, Slamdot
John Martinez Mateo, West High School
Clover Clothing Co. – a brand built on diversity. The designs are created around the Three Leaf Clover, whose three leaves are used to represent the affordability, quality and look of the products.
Mentor – Haseeb Qureshi, Morehous Legal Group
Cole Lusk, Halls Middle School
Lusk Lawn Care – pays special attention to the details of every project to ensure the complete satisfaction of each client. He works to ensure each lawn will be prop-erly mowed, edged and all trimmings and debris will be removed from the prop-erty.
Mentor – Ian Dovan, Seeds of Change
Grace Theriot, Bearden Middle School
Teaching with Classic Movies – an online worksheet database made by students for teachers. They are dedicated to bringing you high-quality, useful work-sheets that take well-known movies and put an analytical spin on them, enabling them to be used as subject and skill reinforcement.
Mentor – Calvin Skinner, Lincoln Memorial University
DeMaré Bean, Bearden High School
The Great American Scourge – a political commentary book written from the perspective of a high school student. The book will evaluate the two-party system and how it has affected political decisions in America.
Mentor – Doug Minter, Knoxville Chamber
Davis Jones, West Valley Middle School
Elastasock – a product that helps people with limited mobility and dexterity put on and remove their socks.
Mentor – Jim Brown, M&M Productions