Aspen students learn " to make money
September 12, 2008
ASPEN ” Class went late at Aspen High School on Friday night ” but students were learning what may be one of the most valuable lessons: how to make money.
The Aspen High School (AHS) entrepreneurship class, taught by Melissa Ernst, sold soft drinks, hot chocolate and coffee at the volleyball and football games on Friday afternoon and evening.
Student groups formed their own “firms,” secured community sponsors to help them with start-up funds, picked a product, marketed it and sold it to attendees. The project challenged each firm to create a leadership structure, manage itself ” and ultimately, make a profit. Each team competed to see who could win the most money.
Ernst said that throughout the competition, she’s seen both good struggles between students on the same team, and very creative products and marketing.
The AHS marketing program has been in existence since 1981, according to department chair Dave Connaroe. Class offerings include marketing, sports and entertainment marketing, financial planning and International Baccalaureate business and management.
This year, each class will have its own real-world projects in which the students practice earning money. In marketing, for example, students will develop, plan, design, produce, and sell a school-related product such as a T-shirt. In sports and entertainment marketing, student teams will advertise and produce an ‘event’ at the half time of a varsity basketball or ice hockey game.
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All proceeds from these money-making projects will go toward sending the students to the Deta Epsilon Chi (DECA) Competition in Grand Junction and Colorado Springs. There, students will take the National DECA Marketing exam, as well as participate in a role-playing competition designed to test their ability to respond to a real-world business problem.
The AHS Marketing program helps students develop academic, leadership, communication, human relations, employability and civic responsibility skills, said Conarroe.