Today’s students are tomorrow’s business moguls and at the LA Urban League we are giving them the opportunity to dream big and turn their business ideas into reality. With programs like Biz Camp and Biz Institute the LA Urban League offers middle and high school students ages 13-18 free workshops and mentorship on how to start and grow a successful business.

In partnership with Network for Teaching Entrepreneurship (NFTE), Biz Camp is a free four-week summer program that aims to activate students’ entrepreneurial mindset while they learn the fundamentals of starting a new business and creating and pitching original business opportunities.

Students who wish to take their business to the next level are encouraged to join our Biz Institute. This year-round small business training program inspires youth to grow their businesses and explore all their opportunities while building upon their business fundamentals. Students are coached through testing business opportunities, developing a unique selling proposition, creating customers, pitching their business, and pricing and making profit.

This past summer Biz Camp students returned for another successful session where they competed for cash prizes ranging from $100 to $750 to help grow their businesses. This year’s winners included three high school seniors. In First place was Laura Thompson with her handmade candles business, Delectable De-lights. In second place, Bre-ahn Goodman Reese took home the $500 prize for her business, Amani Artique, which creates custom handmade and personalized earrings and stickers. And in third place, Samuel Atanaw received the $350 prize for his business Cleandash.

In addition to the Biz Camp, there were also selected winners from Biz Institute and the Fast Pitch Award. For the first place Biz Institute prize, Anthony Baltazar, an exceptional 4th grader who won with his business – Anthony’s Customs, which creates customized hats, shirts, and cups. Second place went to Sonia Allen, an 8th grader, for her vegan bakery business Almond Milk which specializes in plant-based desserts using fresh and organic ingredients. Third place for this summer’s Biz Institute went to another baker, Denise Higgins, a 6th grader, with her all-things lemon baked business, Lemon Love. Last but not least, the fast pitch winner of the summer session went to Brianna Collier, a 9th grader, for her business Happy Blue, which creates Handmade custom jewelry.

Every session of Biz Camp and Biz Institute brings with it an outstanding group of young entrepreneurs. It provides a platform for them to show their creativity and inspires them to turn their ideas into reality. Just like the smallest seeds’ ability to blossom into a grand tree, we are planting the seeds of potential for our participants so that they know they have the power to change the world for the better. It all starts with an idea.