Young entrepreneurs showcased their businesses and graduated from the Young Entrepreneurs Academy on May 24 during a breakfast at .
It was the culmination of more than six months that involved planning a business and learning about business firsthand from business owners, who volunteered their time as instructors and mentors.
"Our hope is that whether they go forward with this business or not, they have the tools and knowledge to replicate and to help our economy get back on track and become the greatest country in the world again," said Dale Perrin, chamber executive director, who organizes the Young Entrepreneurs Academy.
Students shared their diverse business projects with chamber members. Projects included:
- DiEleganza, a high-end, online car sales business started by J.R. Weigand, a Lake Zurich High School junior.
- EZ Reminders, founded by Anmol Nigam, a Lake Zurich Middle School North seventh-grader. He was inspired after missing a doctor's appointment and being charged a fee.
- Sean Baldwin, a Lake Zurich High School freshman, and Colin Carrol, a Lake Zurich Middle School North eighth-grader, founded Superstar Stickers so people could keep track of their athletic equipment.
- Jamie Passagla, a Lake Zurich High School junior, created Jamie’s Organic Bakery, which serves baked goods that are organic, whole grain and fair trade. She represented the academy at the Saunders Scholars Bright Ideas competition in Rochester, N.Y.
- Vaidehee Shah, a Lake Zurich High School sophomore, makes bracelets in her business, Knots 4 You.
- Carmen Ramirez, a Lake Zurich Middle School South seventh-grader, makes bags decorated with buttons in her business Basically Buttons.
- Kirsten Halverson, a Stevenson High School senior, and Monica Hoerner, a Barrington High School sophomore, started Her Place, a spa for young girls in Barrington.
- Sabina Yosif, a Palatine Middle School eighth-grader, started a greeting card company, Doodlez4U.
- Maggie O' Donnell, a Barrington Middle School Prairie seventh-grader, creates furry phone holders for Furry Fones.