Enterprising Students to Showcase Wares

Virtual Business Trade Fair Returns to GCC

Batavia, New York – Sample each state’s specialty souvenirs with Road Trip. Enjoy sweet, succulent candies and chocolates and aromatic scents at the Sugar Shack. Walk, run and hike in stride with Elite Feet. These virtual businesses and many others are created by area high school students, and on Wednesday, March 25, 2015, the student entrepreneurs and virtual business owners will sell their wares during the annual Virtual Business Trade Fair at Genesee Community College. The public is welcome to shop at their booths and spend $10,000 in virtual dollars during trading hours from 10 - 11:30 a.m.—adding to the dynamic business learning experience that regional students and teachers have come to enjoy and appreciate each year.

The Trade Fair is a culmination of learning for high school students from nine schools in the GLOW (Genesee, Livingston, Orleans and Wyoming) region. The students develop a product and create a business during the course of the semester. “It involves everything from writing up a business plan to building a website,” said GCC Career Pathways program director Debbie Dunlevy. “At the Trade Fair, their booths and marketing strategies are judged, as well as the sales they generate during the Fair.”

Students arrive on campus at 9 a.m. to set up, and virtual trading begins at 10 in a near frenzy. Visitors shop at the Fair, each receiving a credit card worth $10,000 virtual dollars to spend from 10 -11:30 a.m. Virtual business students also receive a card with $5,000 virtual dollars. GCC accounting students manage the bank and tally all sales. Other GCC classes are also involved, including entrepreneurship students who evaluate the business plans, while GCC’s Information Technology Academy students will be judging the business websites later in the semester.

At 12:15 p.m. the awards are given for best booth, salesmanship, marketing strategies and total sales. Websites, catalogs and business plans are judged later. Students leave campus at 1 pm.

“This is an excellent experience for high school students,” said Dunlevy. “The curriculum we’ve written for this program covers the Business 101 course here at GCC, so many of these students can earn college credit completing this class.”

Other schools interested in participating at future Virtual Business Fairs or other college-credit academic opportunities should contact Dunlevy through Genesee Community College’s Accelerated College Enrollment (ACE) Program. ACE offers the Advanced Studies and College Today programs known widely in area high schools, as well as the Agri-Business, Health, Information Technology and Legal Career Academies, and the newest ACE program is the Math Science Enrichment program for eligible middle school students. ACE Programs are offered through nearly 40 Western New York school districts and BOCES centers, and the ACE staff is pleased to work closely with many homeschool families. For further information go to: http://www.genesee.edu/depts/ACE/ or call at 585-345-6801.

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