Slideshare uses cookies to improve functionality and performance, and to provide you with relevant advertising. Students in the Business and Finance Career Academy at Woodlawn High School learning to play golf, hope to start golf team at the school.
Giles Phillips, left, greets Jake Petersen on the first day of the Business Incubator Startup class Tuesday at Barrington High School. Instructor Hagop Soulakian explains to students enrolled in Barrington High School's new Business Incubator Startup class Tuesday that they will create a business in the class to solve a problem in their or others' lives. Barrington High School launched not only a new school year Tuesday but a whole new concept in business education. The Business Incubator Startup class, led by former Chicago Mercantile Exchange trader Hagop Soulakian, teaches high school juniors and sophomores the basics of starting a business with minimal waste of time and money. Barrington Unit District 220 officials believe the program may be the first of its kind in the nation for a high school. By the end of the year, it's expected at least one business idea and possibly more will receive investment money from the Barrington Education Foundation and other community sponsors. The five daily sessions of the class occupy a newly renovated room designed to inspire creative thinking, and stocked with state-of-the-art technology to aid the students in their collaborations.


While he didn't have much of a chance Tuesday to learn about each student's motivation for taking the class, Soulakian told them all that greatness was going to be coming out of their classroom and that they shouldn't be afraid of taking risks.
Each class of 25 students will be divided into teams of five to pursue implementation of an idea. But it won't be until May that the surviving ideas will be pitched to the foundation and other potential investors. Even those whose ideas don't end up as a viable business will have learned invaluable lessons, Soulakian said. The Business Incubator Startup class is another example of the innovative thinking and community collaboration at Barrington High School that resulted in other successes such as BHS-TV, Soulakian said. If a comment violates these standards or our terms of service, click the X in the upper right corner of the comment box.
If their ideas are chosen, they'll still be around to develop the business the following year.
Students will be at least six or seven years ahead of their future peers in the business world. 7, the students will work individually on seeking out problems they would like a product or service to solve.


Just before winter break, the teams will be expected to launch a "minimal viable product" to test whether their idea has legs. It's extremely hard, much harder than what I thought, but it's something I'll stick with because I like to learn new things and it's being given to me for free, so why not?"Rigdon offered to teach students at Woodlawn after someone at his church, Church of the Highlands, asked him if he'd consider teaching underprivileged students the game. He contacted the school and Vanessa Jones, coordinator for the Business and Finance Academy jumped at the opportunity."Golf is a business man's game," Jones said. I'm just so elated to see them in another element."Rigdon recruited a few students from Trussville High School's varsity golf team to help teach the Woodlawn students. On a recent day at the driving range, Woodlawn students couldn't wait to use the clubs Rigdon donated to the school."Golf is just a front," Rigdon said. On Jalloh's first day on the golf course, Rigdon set buckets several yards out and told students that whoever got the ball in the basket first would win a hat.
Jalloh hit the bucket first."Without this program, I don't think I would have gotten this chance, so of course I had to go for it," Jalloh said.



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