DANIEL KIM AND NINA HUFFMAN
Virtual Enterprise is an entrepreneurship class offered to the students of San Marcos and other schools nationally. The Virtual Enterprise classes teach students about the fundamentals of business first hand and help them obtain a realistic experience of creating and obtaining a business. The students taking these classes work as a team to create their own business and to build essential aspects of a real company, such as human resources. With an emphasis on college and career readiness, the class helps the students prepare for future jobs and schools.
“In the class you meet a lot of new, cool people,” said senior Bianca Rosales. “You also get a lot of real world experience from this class and by working as a team with your friends.”
Virtual Enterprise transforms the traditional classroom setting to a virtual setting where students learn about personal finances, global business, communication and entrepreneurship. Although the businesses are all virtual, they are created to challenge the students to raise money and avoid debt.
“In this class you get to put you real life knowledge to the test in competitions,” said the Virtual enterprise teacher at San Marcos Tamra Ryan. “Schools compete in meets where they are graded on their booth presentations, business plans, human resources and their overall business. The class is really hands on and provides real world learning you won’t be able to get in any other class.”
This year, the Virtual Enterprise class created their mock business called “Coast 2 Coast Events,” a ticket sales business, and have begun to compete in trade meets (Virtual Enterprise competitions) against hundreds of schools across the nation. San Marcos won multiple awards from their competition in Bakersfield such as Impact Marketing, Booth Design, Advanced Web Design, and the State Business Challenge. In the competition of 91 schools, San Marcos placed in the top 10 and are currently in the lead for the Santa Barbara area. Senior Sienna Ibnez placed first in the high pressure State Business Challenge, senior Fernando Lemus placed 9th for the Impact Marketing Competition, senior Anthony De La Mora placed 8th in Web Design, and the company received an honorable mention for the Most Creative Booth Design. San Marcos also received the Business Professionalism Award for The outstanding conduct, uniform, and behavior, at the California State Virtual Enterprise trade Show and 2nd Annual Business and Entrepreneurship Conference.
“This class is more of a hands-on learning experience,” said senior Jacob Valdivia “I have learned a lot from going to trade meets and other events where I am involved with my business.”
Students and educators across the nation have described the program as motivational, competitive, real world, and even revolutionary. What the kids gain from this class, is an experience and knowledge that cannot be taught by other programs. Companies such as McGraw Hill and Bank of America have recognized this program to show exceptional results and to be able to teach students unlike any other program available to students. They have also noted that not only are the kids more educated about starting their own business, but they have learned to show the proper etiquette, attitude, and maturity for running a real business.
“Once they started working and controlling their own company, they really started to emerge as young adults,” said Lisa Costantino, a teacher at Edward R. Murrow High School. “They went from being a student, to being CEO and EVP and actually doing those positions.”
This class is a great opportunity for students who are looking into the future of business. From forming a new business, to competing against fellow schools, there is something for everyone to enjoy about the Virtual Enterprise experience.