Making Jobs Easier to Get: Cameron Kuwata’s Idea to hook you up with EZ Trabajo

Cameron Kuwata (14) - MADE Competition Competitor and UCM Business Camp graduate.

Cameron Kuwata (14) – MADE Competition Competitor and UCM Business Camp graduate.

There are plenty of jobs out there for interested people. Yes, it is true, jobs are available. There are job sites that mass market these openings. Cameron Kuwata of Lee’s Summit, Missouri has an idea to get you employment faster with targeted job opening hosting. The 15 year old has identified a need for a, specific market, job search website.

EZ Trabajo, Kuwata’s business idea, means EZ Jobs in Spanish. Catering to the Hispanic community, Kuwata says, “The Hispanic population is growing and there are no tools dedicated to them to help them find jobs and services.” To get his business up and running, Kuwata has been meeting with several key individuals within the Hispanic community and working with business development coaches which ultimately led him to be a competitor at the State Fair as part of the MADE in Missouri Entrepreneurship Competition on August 12.

It is no surprise that Kuwata attended the business camp at the University of Central Missouri, hosted by the Small Business Technology Development Center, and found his love for entrepreneurship. He goes on to explain, “We have many entrepreneurs in our family so when I saw that there was a entrepreneurship camp near me I decided to take the camp. Also I saw that there is a business aspect in everything we do and the camp would help me later in my future. “

Find him at the competition, steal some of his time, and find out more about EZ Trabajo.

 

A New Company Skating into Town: Hunter Hedgepath’s Creative Vision

Hunter Hedgepath (15), MADE Competitor and MU Business Camp Graduate.

Hunter Hedgepath (15), MADE Competitor and MU Business Camp Graduate.

Winner of the Build-A-Business Camp “Overall Champion” and 1st Place “Senior Youth Category Champion”, Hunter Hedgepath of St. Robert, Missouri has a vision to give skaters what they ultimately crave; a custom, one-of-a-kind, hand designed skateboard to show off to all their friends. Age 15 might seem like a young age to start pursuing this dream but by keeping his idea simple, clean, and bootstrapping as much as he can, Hedgepath knows it’s a very obtainable reality.

A strong testimony to Hedgepath’s passion for skating reigns his company name and slogan. Control the World “Skate or Die”, leaves an impression that only true skaters can admire. For Hedgepath’s target market, he knows that the one thing they love in life is their ability to skate and enjoy life to the fullest, that’s why his slogan is filled with meaning to his customers and himself. When asked why he was interested in entrepreneurship he replied, “I wanted to be an entrepreneur because of the thought of the freedom that I could have as an entrepreneur. So, I joined my passion for art and skating to form my own business.”

Hedgepath's 1st batch of customer T-Shirts created for by his company.

Hedgepath’s 1st batch of customer T-Shirts created for by his company.

Hedgepath and his business idea, Control the World, are set to be one of the over a dozen competitors this year at the State Fair in Sedalia, Missouri on August 12, 2014. The competition, hosted by the Missouri Valley Community Action Agency will pit young entrepreneurs against one another in the search for the “Missouri State Fair Entrepreneur of the Year” for both the youth and adult categories.

 

 

Entrepreneurs with a Sweet Tooth: Kayla Huff and her Partner baking up some Business

 

Sarah Whanger and Kayla Huff (both 16), MADE Competition Competitors. Huff is a MU Business Camp graduate.

Sarah Whanger and Kayla Huff (both 15), MADE Competition Competitors. Huff is a MU Business Camp graduate.

“My name is Kayla Huff. I am a fifteen year old entrepreneur who lives in the small town of Montgomery City, Missouri”. When Kayla was one of my students at the 2014 Build-A-Business Camp hosted in Columbia, Missouri, I finally caught scent of her sweet desire to go above and beyond others and do something greater. Kayla teamed up with another student from her school, Sarah Whanger to create a strong name and a catchy slogan: County Cupcakes “Tastefully Sweet. Playfully Unique. Cupcakes for a Cause.”

As the 1st runner-up in the senior youth category winner of the Build-A-Business Camp Pitch Competition, Huff says, “Our company is about giving back to the local school’s sports program and to the community.” with a good cause attached and a tasteful product, there is no way this business can’t come to fruition. Huff and Whanger are currently working on their business plan and financials in order to compete at the MADE competition at the Missouri State Fair on August 12, 2014. To make the process easier, through the support of the Small Business Technology Development Center, the students have access to a business development and start-up software called, Monocle. Thanks to her support structure of camp, business counselors, family and friends, Huff exclaims, “I’m on my way to launching the business in my own town!”

Hoping to win some start-up funding at the competition, Huff and Whanger have their eyes dead-set on preparing for the steep competition.

 

Sometime you just need to Give Back a little Good Luck: Taylor Plunkett’s dream Tees

Taylor Plunkett (16), MADE Competition Competitor and MU Business Camp

Taylor Plunkett (16), MADE Competition Competitor and MU Business Camp

Did you know, an elephant with its trunk raised is a symbol of good luck? 15 year old Taylor Plunkett from Wright City, Missouri prizes the elephant’s symbolism and spun it in an even more meaningful way. Describing her idea paired with symbolism, Plunkett states, “My business Giving Back Good Luck is a high school sport, pre design, and customized t-shirt company that gives you the chance to give back. Depending on the shirt you choose you will have the option to give back to your local high school sports funding, elephant rescue, or a charity of your choice.”

As a Build-A-Business Camp graduate, Plunkett has been dedicatedly pursuing her idea. Even during camp, Plunkett was superseding by working after camp hours to research, prepare, and progress her philanthropic business concept. Currently in preparation for the MADE Competition on August 12, 2014, she has been working day and night to make connections, use Monocle to prepare her business documents, and consult with others on developing the details of her thoughts.

Plunkett plans to attend the Small Business Technology and Development Center’s business camp in 2015 to continue learning about entrepreneurship to grow her business idea. How does she feel her business meets a need? “My business meets the needs of others by giving them an opportunity to give back in the convenient way of buying something they use daily: a shirt!  It also puts an exciting, fun, unique twist on the normally dull, thoughtless high school shirts.”

Success is subjective. “No matter how this business pans out I’ve set myself up for success.” Plunkett clarifies, “My goal is to gain knowledge and experience and with every step I take I do just that…so if you ask me I’m already successful!”

Young Entrepreneur cooking up an Idea: Cameron Courtwright Catering to the Customer

Cameron Courtwright (13), a MADE Competition Competitor and UCM Business Camp Graduate

Cameron Courtwright (13), a MADE Competition Competitor and UCM Business Camp Graduate

With a rich backstory, a creative name, and an impressive demeanor, few 13 year olds can knock you on your feet like Cameron Courtwright can. Warrensburg, Missouri hosted a summer business camp to cultivate young entrepreneurs and Courtwright is a powerful example of the amount of passion and ideal that can flow from a body fresh out of camp. “I have wanted to be a restaurant owner since I was a small child.” says Courtwright, “I like to cook and I like people.  I have been saving recipes and collecting mugs since I was around eight.” Courtwright came to the business camp hosted by the Small Business Technology and Development Center and the University of Central Missouri with a brief idea of what he wanted to do, “This camp has shown me how to run my business, from advertising and business skills to ideas for businesses in the future.  The camp has given me the opportunity to look at catering on demand now from my home, rather than waiting until I am old enough to own a full restaurant.”

After camp was finished, Courtwright looked to continue his idea, Mug’s Catering. I just knew, a student who can be quoted with saying, “Success to me is turning a profit and providing good customer service.” is really a student worth mentoring. Courtwright is a strong contender who will be competing at the Missouri State Fair as part of the MADE competition hosted by the Missouri Valley Community Action Agency on August 12, 2014.

14 is the New 30 for Starting a Business: Washing Away the Competition

Charli Rhyne (14), Competitor in the MADE Competition and UCM Business Camp Graduate.

Charli Rhyne (14), Competitor in the MADE Competition and UCM Business Camp Graduate.

The MADE in Missouri Entrepreneurship Competition is the host to many exciting stories, thrilling ideas, and charismatic young people. Charli Rhyne, age 14 of Warrensburg, Missouri is a prime example of such. If you end up at the State Fair on August 12th, 2014 you will see a new apparent theme happening in the state of Missouri. 14 is the new 30 for business start-ups. With the dream in her mind of starting an updated and modern laundry-mat coupled sandwich shop, Rhyne is pushing the innovation boundaries in a college town.

“It started with entrepreneurship/small business camp this summer…” says Rhyne, “and now I’m in the process of making it happen.” Rhyne was one of the promising students within the business camp at the University of Central Missouri hosted by the Small Business Technology and Development Center. “Don’t be afraid to fail and be prepared to be told “no” or it’s not going to work.” During camp, Rhyne came out of her shell and pitched her heart out to judges and public alike, clearly not afraid to fail.

When you consider the practicality of her idea, Rhyne knows, “Start-up costs are one of my biggest obstacles” but that isn’t going to stop her. I’ve heard word of other thoughts and plans amounting. Overcoming barriers, starting businesses, and learning from failure are no longer just for the adult business start-up scene. Catch her at the State Fair and see for yourself, young entrepreneurs are sweeping the Midwest.

Summers@Mizzou Program educates Young Entrepreneurs

Taylor Plunkett, Brandon Banks, Hunter Hedgepath, and Kayla Huff after the Build-A-Business Camp Pitch Competition.

Taylor Plunkett, Brandon Banks, Hunter Hedgepath, and Kayla Huff after the Build-A-Business Camp Pitch Competition.

There is something to be said for a program that remains consistent in it’s mission to educate youth on entrepreneurship. Over the summer, 16 youth gathered on the campus of the University of Missouri – Columbia (Mizzou) to partake in an annual summer camp put on by MU 4-H Extension and it’s partners.

 

This camp that happened the week of July 13 – 17, 2014 generated 3 students who then proceeded on to apply for the MADE Competition and get accepted under the mentorship of counselor, Brandon Banks. Throughout the week of camp (Sunday night – Thursday evening) campers learned many things about business and even developed their own micro-business idea. These students, ages 12 – 17, had ideas that span from custom T-shirts to custom skateboard designs, school sport themed cupcakes, and even to the idea to develop phone apps to make life easier.

 

On Thursday, the campers prepared for their final step of camp, a competition against each other. These campers pitched their ideas to three judges in hopes to be named “Overall Champion”. The final day’s competition named an overall winner, first place in youth and senior youth category, as well as a runner-up in each respective category. The Build-A-Business Camp winners were as follows:

Pitch competition overall winner:
Hunter Hedgepath, custom skateboards/t-shirts

Age 15-18 division:
1st place – Hunter Hedgepath, Runner-up – Kayla Huff

Age 12-14 division:
1st place – Hallie Lindsey, Runner-up – Kaitlyn Roberts

 

Now it is time for Hunter Hedgepath, Kayla Huff, and the third MU Camp graduate, Taylor Plunkett, to show what they learned and compete in the business competition – MADE, at the State Fair on August 12, 2014. Wish them luck!

 

Brandon Banks (@brandonbanksbiz), a serial entrepreneur began his entrepreneurial adventure at a young age and currently travels to educate students on the possibility of seizing the day and moving toward their dreams of being their own boss. Together in collaboration with his network Banks disrupts common traditional barriers and exposes that through proper support anyone can be an entrepreneur regardless of where they are at in life. Check out more of Banks’ writing here: http://www.brandonbanksbiz.wordpress.com