By SCOTT MCKIE B.P.
ONE FEATHER STAFF
The Cherokee Business Development Center is hosting a competition this spring to help Cherokee High School students learn the ins and outs of developing a business plan. Interested students will be required to submit an executive plan, description of their business, a marketing plan, a management profile and a financial plan.
“Business planning is extremely important and required for most business owners seeking financing,” said Hope Huskey, business development specialist at the Cherokee Business Development Center. “A properly done plan will not only allow other people to share in the vision, but will also help keep the entrepreneur focused and ensure that all aspects of business planning are addressed.”
Cash prizes will be awarded in the competition as follows: 1st – $1,000; 2nd – $500 and 3rd – $250. The project is funded by the Cherokee Preservation Foundation.
The deadline for business plans to be turned in to the Cherokee Business Development Center is Wednesday, April 18. Prizes will be presented on Thursday, May 3.
Huskey related that the Sequoyah Fund has held a business plan contest for the past three years between students at Haywood Community College, Southwestern Community College and Tri-County Community College.
“This competition has generated a lot of great plans and resulted in the establishment of two businesses in western North Carolina,” she said. “Cherokee Business Development wanted to expand the idea of encouraging students to think of business ownership as a career option, and let them know it is something to seriously consider at the high school level. The business plan competition will also help teach participants financial literacy skills as they look at the financial aspects of business ownership and gives insight into economic and community development.”
Huskey said the Sequoyah Fund has helped Cherokee Central Schools teachers and administrators attend REAL (Rural Entrepreneurship through Action Learning) training for the past three years.
“Several teachers in the school are utilizing REAL materials and exercises in their classrooms,” said Huskey. “Notable examples include the auto mechanics and art classrooms where students learn how to order supplies and price their work. Cherokee Business Development and Sequoyah Fund continue to work with these teachers to expand the role of entrepreneurship training in the school.”
For more information on the business plan contest, contact Hope Huskey 497-1670 or firstname.lastname@example.org.