This past May, six high school teams from Walden Grove High School competed in Seed Spot Next, a social entrepreneurship program designed work with school students and “provide[s] the curriculum, training, resources, and support for schools to teach entrepreneurship so students can change the world.” Taught by Krista Gypton, local students embarked on a yearlong process of finding a problem to solve, developing a solution, building a business model, and pitching it to potential investors and advisors.
The students brought many different rewards, including the “Mobile Rain” team which went on to win the ASU/CISCO competition, bringing home $5000 for their venture. The proposed business, created by Andrew Moreno and Tylor Tang, would provide an avenue for homeless members of local communities to shower, freshen up and change; increasing their health and self-esteem, and potentially enabling them to go on job interviews and enter the workforce.
“The most amazing part of this program is watching the students start to see themselves as the solutions instead of voiceless in the face of problems,” reflected Gypton. All of the teams excelled at the competition, referred to as DEMO Day.
Safe Stride: This is a mobile application that protects joggers in case of an emergency. The team, with Mya Mouradian, Abby Booth and Gabe Fortin, won the opportunity to work with an App Developer.
Vibe: This venture has the goal to provide fun events for teens that will help prevent drug and alcohol use. They won $500 which is going to sponsoring their first VIBE event Senior Sunset on May 13th. This team was made up of Baliea McDermot, Hannah Rowe, Megan Osier and Cesar Oviedo.
Date It Together: With members Daeyln Meyer, Felicia Duran and Esther Loser, the team won $300 to cover the printing of their first calendar to help families plan time together to keep them connected.
Seeds for Needs: This team is creating a compact herb garden they will sell and donate 1/2 the proceeds to supporting low income family access to community gardens. They won an hour of consulting. The team members were Carlos Martinez, Heath Zuniga, Justine Rivera and Will Vance.
Future Now: Team members Dorothy Clough and Carolina Corella were each awarded mentorships to move their concepts forward. This high school after-school program teaches life skills.
Gypton also spoke about the value of the program to the students for long-term success. “I believe the best type of learning occurs when students are actively engaged in something real. When they are the ones identifying the needs, creating the solutions and moving beyond being passive receivers of information. This class did ALL of that and more.”
Mobile Rain creator Tylor Tang also had very positive things to say about the program, commenting that “This may only be a year-long class, but the opportunities and experiences it provided will impact me throughout my whole life.”