Students who are interested in becoming entrepreneurs can take FDM 437 Small Business Start-Up, a capstone course in which students build professional business plans and get hands-on experience in opening a retail store. A highlight of the course last semester was the 2018 Retail Business Plan Contest, in which students competed to present a workable plan for starting their own business. This was an opportunity for students to showcase their creativity, get valuable feedback, network with community leaders and alumni, and compete for cash prizes to help bring their product or service to market.
The final three winners are Savannah Adler, and her business We Are Worthy, who won $3,000 for 1st place; Julie Truong, and her business AYU, who won $1,000 for 2nd place; and Kaycee Yoshioka, and her business Sekoya, who won $750, for 3rd place.
Besides these winners, all of the students in the class worked extremely hard, not only on group/individual projects during the semester but also at the contest as emcees and staff.
Many thanks go to the sponsors: the Mamoru and Aiko Takitani Foundation ($5,000), PACE ($1,000), FCS department (big checks and leis), and CTAHR (marketing, videography, photography, and poster), as well as advisory sponsors and supporters Kini Zamora, HISBDC, and RMH.
Youngjin Bahng, who teaches FDM 437, hopes that the contest can be held every year, saying that it motivates them to make their business plans a reality. Check out the video here and more photos of the event here.