EKU Helps Stage Entrepreneurship Fair
EKU, the Southern Kentucky Chamber of Commerce and Corbin Independent Schools are partnering to stage an entrepreneurship fair at Corbin Intermediate School.
The event, scheduled for Friday, Dec. 10, from 12:45 to 2:30 p.m. at the school, is designed to introduce students to the possibility of entrepreneurship as a career choice.
Corbin Intermediate sixth-graders, working in teams of five or six, will conduct market surveys and develop business plans, and sell a product, possibly their own invention or innovation, or a service. Fifth-graders from Corbin Intermediate and third-graders from Corbin Elementary will earn pretend money (“dog dough”) as an academic and behavior reward from Nov. 29 through Dec. 10. The money may then be used to purchase goods and services at the fair.
Students will rent the gymnasium space for 10 percent of the profit from their businesses, using the “dog dough.” If their business fails to turn a profit, they owe nothing. Each business will be given $20 in “dog dough” for start-up money. Students are to complete a loan agreement, with a 1 percent interest fee, promising to repay the money.
“Providing this opportunity for the students while collaborating with EKU is a win-win situation,” said Jennie Watkins, sixth-grade teacher at Corbin Intermediate. “Our students need to understand economics as part of our core content. This opportunity gives them a real-world connection.”
In addition, John Surmont, founder of Sofcoast and a Corbin High School graduate, will address the sixth-graders on Wednesday, Dec. 1, at 1:15 p.m.
“This fair embodies many elements that help not only schools, but also communities,” said Kelli Moore, EKU educational extension agent for Whitley, Knox and Laurel counties. “Many economic development experts believe that for rural communities, entrepreneurship is becoming the driving force in economic development.”
Providing opportunities for youth today and in the future is a step in the right direction, Moore said.
“We hope students will develop a positive attitude toward entrepreneurship and the possibility of contributing to our local economy, instead of moving away when they reach adulthood. This is one step toward keeping our best and our brightest in the area.”