FC Entrepreneurship Students Attend Annual Gala

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(Photo courtesy of D’Anna Johnson)

Amber Ecelbarger, Sports Editor

On March 3, 2016, eight Falls Church Entrepreneurship students participated in the NFTE Ignite Opportunity Gala. The gala, recognized as the area’s largest event that supports young entrepreneurs, was held at the Ronald Reagan Building in Washington, D.C. from 3:30 to 10 p.m. In class this year, Entrepreneurship students were to create their own businesses. The Gala was a showcase giving students the opportunity to highlight these businesses to the Washington D.C. Business Community.

Select students are chosen to attend the Gala. Mr. Coulter, the Entrepreneurship teacher here at Falls Church, noted that he sent students based on “their dedication to their businesses, their thoroughness, as well as their commitment to the entrepreneurship program.” The students who were chosen to participate this year were seniors Rachel Albright, Sean Clary, D’Anna Johnson, Cintia Samaha, Campbell Scheuerman, Sahas Upreti, Josh Worley, and Ivan Zelaya. Students chose to either work in pairs or alone and displayed their businesses to the roaming attendees.

campRachel and Campbell paired up to market their idea of a unique 3D printer. Sean and Josh worked together to promote their idea of a device called Breath Alert, that detects a person’s blood alcohol content and calls them an Uber if needed. Sahas and Ivan together showed off their idea of an educational organizational app called WorkPlace. D’Anna chose to work alone as she promoted her business which created Hawaiian leis. Cintia also worked alone to display her nifty wine glass candle business, which she called Sip n’ Scent Candles.

During the Gala, student vendors had the opportunity to make business contacts and come in contact with Angel Investors. Coulter believed the event was a perfect way for students to gain valuable business and selling experience. Campbell, reflecting back on the experience, said, “It was neat because it allowed for us to gain experience with pitching our ideas and selling to people. We also met a lot of influential members that contributed greatly to the NFTE (Network for Teaching Entrepreneurship organization).”

Cintia said, “It was an amazing opportunity that I am sahasglad to have taken part in. Not only was I able to connect and meet with other students who created their own businesses, but I was able to network with real life entrepreneurs who are extremely successful because of their endeavors and ideas. The people I spoke to gave me advice on how to better my business plan and expand my target market.”

Overall, both the students who attended as well as Mr. Coulter are pleased with the event and the outcome. Falls Church is extremely proud of our talented and creative entrepreneurship students and is excited to see how they expand on their ideas in the future.