Headline News

Oct 2012
Aside from all the political articles and letters to the editor appearing in our local publications, have you noticed the one huge positive topic these days is student related?  There seems to be an ongoing theme ranging from Medina being named one of America’s Best Communities for Young People, to the 10th year celebration of Leadership Medina County’s Junior Program, and now the continuation of the Greater Medina Chamber of Commerce’s YEA! Program.  A true reinforcement centered on the importance of our youth and the realization which, we all know, confirms the commitment of our business community and effective, top quality education.
For the second year the Greater Medina Chamber of Commerce is offering the Young Entrepreneurs Academy to local students interested in starting and running a real business through the assistance of local leaders, community minded members, and educators.  The good news, with the success of last year’s program, the word is out and the Academy is growing.
Kathy Breitenbucher, a member of the Greater Medina Chamber of Commerce’s board of directors, CEO of The Pedestal Group and an entrepreneur herself, was a facilitator for the first year’s YEA Program.  Under the direction of Debra Lynn-Schmitz, our Chamber President and program manager of YEA, Kathy has agreed to continue and provide her expertise to this year’s class.  Below are a few of her reflections regarding our past year’s class and our upcoming entrepreneurs.  
“Last year's YEA class was 10 students, 9 from Medina High School.  After 30 weeks of classes and over 40 business leaders volunteering their time, one student has gone into her business and using it as her career.  Another student is working on his business to launch in the near future and has also made a pitch to Shark Tank (the TV show) to obtain additional funding.  Three of the students have chosen not to pursue their original ideas as they are now attending college, but are using the knowledge they obtained through the class to help fund their schooling.  One student has continued to pursue her business part time and on breaks.
This year class started off strong with 21 students on October 10th.  The students come from Medina, Brunswick, Buckeye, and Cloverleaf and we are thrilled with the participation from the Career Center.  The weekend of October 20th was the big brainstorming session where the students will begin to settle on their business ideas. 
The program has over 50 volunteers who have already signed up to commit time to this project over the next 27 weeks.  In addition, the Medina Chamber is looking for mentors to help the students guide their projects through the business planning stage and investors to be part of our own Shark Tank panel. 
Through this program the students will:
  • Determine a solid business idea
  • Pitch the idea to bankers to make sure they are on a good track
  • Develop a business plan
  • Develop a marketing plan
  • Develop a business identity (logo, website, etc.)
  • Go for funding to our investor panel
  • Participate in a trade show
  • Network with business leaders throughout our community.
The Greater Medina Chamber of Commerce is thrilled this year to have been invited to the Medina County Business Awards on October 30th as the theme is Entrepreneurship.  The Medina County Economic Development Corporation felt it was a great opportunity for the students to hear more about entrepreneurship in Medina County. 
Overall, the commitment from our business community to this project has been awe-inspiring.  The wealth of knowledge and the willingness to share is something that is clearly not the norm for these programs as on the calls with Rochester (where the program was developed). They are often surprised by the level of commitment we have.
The Greater Medina Chamber of Commerce and its board of directors would like to thank those individuals, businesses and owners (past and present) who have contributed to the success of the YEA! Program.  With so much involvement from the Medina community, one could hope for continued recognition, not only locally, but state and nationally too.
Just a gentle reminder, Tuesday, November 6th is election day.  The Greater Medina Chamber of Commerce believes and supports the electoral process and encourages all to exercise your right to vote.  Make sure you are part of Ohio’s future by being included.     
Respectfully submitted,
Valerie L. Rapp
Chairperson of the Board of Directors 2012

Posted by Susan Murawski on October 22, 2012 at 2:47 PM
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