Twenty-nine Young Entrepreneurs Academy (YEA!) students nationally have been selected to compete in the 7th Annual Southeast Regional Saunders Scholars Competition.Hundreds of business and educational leaders, students and parents will gather to hear America’s top young entrepreneurs aged 11-18 pitch their business plans. The 7th Annual YEA! Saunders Scholars Southeast Semi-Finals competition will kick-off May 29th at 3:30 p.m., at Florida Atlantic University’s Sean Stein Pavilion. This culminating event is free and open to the public.
There will be three regional competitions nationwide and the Boca Chamber has been selected to host the Southeast Regional Competition in Boca Raton, Florida. The Boca Chamber’s Golden Bell Education Foundation has been running the YEA! program for four consecutive years with terrific success.
The top two student businesses from each regional competition will be flown to Washington, DC to compete in the Finals round at America’s Small Business Summit. These young entrepreneurs will be competing to win college scholarships ranging from $25,000 – $50,000 and the opportunity to be on ABC Television’s hit show Shark Tank!
Local entrepreneurs, CEOs, and respected community members will be judging this year’s Southeast Regional competition, choosing who will be advancing to the Finals round. Executives from Bluegreen Vacations, Croskey Lanni, PC, Florida Atlantic University and Research Park, Florida Power and Light, Office Depot Foundation, Seacoast National Bank, Sam’s Club, and the U.S. Chamber of Commerce will participate as judges at the Southeast Regional Competition, being held at Florida Atlantic University.
The Saunders Scholars Semi-Finals Competition would not be possible without the support of partners:
Florida Atlantic University, Bluegreen Vacations, TouchSuite, Office Depot Foundation, Rapoprt’s Restaurant Group, Florida Power and Light and Aliant Payment Systems
The Boca Chamber runs the Young Entrepreneurs Academy locally through their Golden Bell Education Foundation and relies solely on the support of volunteers and corporate and personal sponsorships. There are over 117 YEA! locations in 38 states nationwide. This year, the Boca Chamber’s Golden Bell Education Foundation’s Young Entrepreneurs Academy graduated 21 CEOs overseeing 13 businesses.
During the course of the nine-month program, more than 30 local businesses became involved with YEA! at various levels. Students work in close cooperation with local business leaders, community leaders and educators who use their personal experiences to demonstrate how to transform their ideas into tangible enterprises that create economic and social value for a better world.