Kent State’s Blackstone Launchpad Promotes Entrepreneurship for High Schoolers
Kent State University’s Blackstone LaunchPad recently hosted 16 students from the Junior Leadership Hudson program at Hudson High School and Western Reserve Academy, as well as another 13 from Orange High School’s Entrepreneur Intercession. The students participated in an entrepreneurial workshop designed to increase their awareness and knowledge of the venture creation process.
Lynn Buchinsky, venture advisor at Kent State’s Blackstone LaunchPad, facilitated multiple hands-on activities for the students, igniting their innovative mindset with challenges, idea generation, brainstorming techniques and opportunities to pitch their ideas. The students learned more about entrepreneurship via a Jeopardy-style game, talking with a student entrepreneur and working with a number of idea-generation tools. With a case study problem in hand, the student teams got to “get out of the building” onto the Kent Campus to solicit feedback from students about potential solutions, which they then presented for prizes.
“It was so great to collaborate with the students and their teachers, giving them an opportunity to explore innovative solutions to everyday problems,” Buchinsky says.
Although Blackstone LaunchPad primarily focuses on students at the college level, the program also does outreach such as this with interested high school groups in order to strengthen and smoothen the entrepreneurship pathway from high school to college.
“We have found that our experience working with college students can be translated well for high school students, and we are glad to be a part of the Kent State community outreach efforts,” says Julie Messing, executive director of the program. “Demonstrating the innovation and entrepreneurial focus of the campus is an important part of what Blackstone LaunchPad is about, and we’re happy to be able to share that with a wide audience.”