Young Americans Blog

Showing Off

By: Katie Payer Published: April 15th, 2013
Our two exhibiting young entrepreneurs pose with CEO Rich Martinez after the event.

Our two exhibiting young entrepreneurs pose with CEO Rich Martinez after the event.

On Friday, two of our young entrepreneurs exhibited at TEDxYouth@MileHigh.  This event, part of the TEDxMileHigh series, offered engaging exhibits and inspiring talks for 2,000 high school students.

In case you’re not familiar with TED, know that it’s a great thing to check out.  TED is a nonprofit devoted to Ideas Worth Spreading. It started out (in 1984) as a conference bringing together people from three worlds: Technology, Entertainment, Design. Since then its scope has become ever broader, and includes independently organized “TEDx” events.  This year’s “TEDxYouth@MileHigh” was just one of many youth events around the globe.

Inspired action

Speakers at this year’s event included a 7th grader working on stem-cell research, a 17-year-old developing animatronic limbs, a parkour group, and a collaboration between Ballet Nouveau Colorado and the Lighthouse Writers Workshop.

Before the great talks got started, however, the high school attendees interacted with a wide variety of groups and activities in the “Action Labs”.  Young Americans got to take part in these Action Labs with an entrepreneur-focused theme.

We invited two of our stellar young business owners to entice their peers into entrepreneurship conversations through earnings and time spent.

Ariane Vigil talks to Youth Council member Luz Castaneda about her business.

Ariane Vigil talks to Youth Council member Luz Castaneda about her business.

A quick path to a large profit

Ariane Vigil owns a business called Petals, Purses and Pastries.  As the name sounds, her business consists of some yummy baked goods, as well as unique duct tape wallets, purses and hair accessories.  With just two rolls of duct tape, each $4-5, she can make 10 items to sell.  When Ariane started talking with the TEDxYouth attendees, they were really intrigued to hear that she could make nearly $50 in profit with just a few hours of work.

T.R. Mitchell shows off his jewelry and explains how he balances his business with his other activities.

T.R. Mitchell shows off his jewelry and explains how he balances his business with his other activities.

Plenty of time

T.R. Mitchell manages to balance a lot as a teenager.  When he spoke to all the Action Labs attendees, he told them that he participates in 3 varsity sports, maintains a rigorous class and homework schedule, keeps a great social life, AND runs T.R.’s Treasures, his jewelry making business, on top of things.  The students were all really impressed.  More than that, many realized that they could run a business with their busy schedules as well.

Get a bit more from T.R. about his experience by watching this quick video:

High school students at TEDxYouth@MileHigh wrote their business ideas on flip charts around the exhibit space.

High school students at TEDxYouth@MileHigh wrote their business ideas on flip charts around the exhibit space.

After students spoke to T.R. and Ariane, they posted their business ideas on the various flip charts we offered.  Hundreds of creative students shared their ideas.  These ideas included everything from “babysit” to “design MMA outfits for girls.”

We were so impressed with all the students who came to learn about youth entrepreneurship.  Special thanks to Ariane and T.R. for hosting interactive, informational exhibits.

Tell us: what’s YOUR business idea you want to share with the world?

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