Stamford students can begin business careers — in high school
Stamford High School is getting down to business – the teaching of business. Next fall, a new business education program will launch called the High School of Business.
All high school students living in Stamford can apply to learn the basics of business administration and marketing. The curriculum is designed to be “project-based” learning, an increasingly popular method of teaching young people through doing.
“Kids are learning and they don't even know it,” said Laurie Urich, program director for the High School of Business at the MBA Research and Curriculum Center, the Ohio-based not-for-profit that developed the program. “I have seen students in action where they are just going gangbusters because they get so motivated and so involved in the program.”
Local business and industry leaders will be brought into the classroom to speak with students throughout the program. Urich said students will take ownership of projects and present their conclusions to business executives, fostering confidence and public speaking skills. The capstone of the program includes students starting their own businesses.
The courses cover principles of business, marketing and management, business economics and management and business strategies, among others.
Stamford will be Connecticut’s pilot program, and Stamford High School coordinator Dorothea Mackey said it’s a unique learning opportunity for students.
“This way they could go to college business school and be prepared for the different classes in a business administration program,” Mackey said. “They will start their own business. It will bring them networking with local businesses, local politicians.”
Students enrolled in the program can opt to take a leadership course in the second semester of freshman year. By sophomore year, students begin the business curriculum, where they can earn up to nine college-level class credits.
Business students also connect with local colleges as well as national organizations, including Future Business Leaders of America and DECA, formally known as the Distributive Education Clubs of America, which prepares future leaders and entrepreneurs in the fields of marketing, finance and management.
To be considered for admission to the Stamford High School of Business, a student in the city school district must fill out an application. Registration is open and applications will be accepted until Tuesday, Feb. 28, according to the Stamford High School website. A lottery will be held Wednesday, March 1.
This story has been updated.