Updated: February 09, 2022 6:48 PM
Portia McGhie presenting her business plan at a previous BizCamp (Photograph provided)
Next week, business-savvy teens will get a free crash course in entrepreneurship.
The Youth Entrepreneurship Initiative, in collaboration with the Economic Development Department, will provide mini BizCamp from February 14 to 19. This will be a combination of in-person workshops held in the mornings at the Impact Academy and online video lectures conducted during participants’ free time.
Joe Mahoney, executive director of YEI, said the goal is to inspire young people to become business savvy and understand economic self-sufficiency through self-employment.
“Participants receive a business plan template,” he said. “After learning the concepts, they complete the plan with information for their own business.”
The camp will help students brainstorm a business idea; they don’t have to come up with one.
“We ask them what their hobbies are,” Mahoney said. “We ask them what their passions are. What do they have skills? We try to get an assessment of their interests and follow that path.
He said it’s a short window of time, but many students who are shy to start get up and present their business plan at the end of the week.
“Some of those who are more energetic are really getting into what their stuff might be,” he said.
Mr. Mahoney has been involved with the program in Bermuda for two decades. During this period, he saw more than 1,000 students pass through it.
“There are a lot of them in business now, or working in banks,” he said. “It gives them a good idea of what to expect.”
The camp will feature the National Foundation for Entrepreneurship Education’s award-winning curriculum modified for BizCamp’s format as well as interactive activities for each participant to present a business plan at the end of the session.
Participants will learn opportunity recognition, cost of goods, pricing, industry analysis, target customers, marketing, and many other aspects of running a business.
All participants who complete a business plan will receive certificates, and some may be eligible to enter the Bermuda Economic Development Corporation’s Youth Rocket Pitch competition in October. They will have the chance to win prizes and venture capital funds up to $2,500 to further their entrepreneurial journey.
“It’s a great opportunity to see what the future of Bermudian entrepreneurship looks like,” said BEDC’s Jamillah Lodge.
BEDC Director Ray Jones said entrepreneurship is a crucial pillar of Bermuda’s economy.
“Nurturing the entrepreneurial aspirations of Bermuda’s youth, the island will continue to be in good hands with business start-ups, job creation and growing self-sufficiency and sustainability,” Mr Jones said. .
“EDD is thrilled to continue supporting BizCamps as it has over the years, and we look forward to seeing what great ideas Bermuda students come up with at the end of the week.”
BizCamp is free and open to students aged 13-18.
Registration is open now through Saturday. Electronic applications are available at www.yei.bm, or by sending an e-mail to BizCamp@yei.bm.