Project-based business classes provide an introduction to the real world

Ava+French+models+a+dress+for+her+business%2C+Keep+It+Going%2C+which+turns+used+clothes+into+fresh+pieces.+French+used+her+skills+from+the+business+classes+to+start+Keep+It+Going.+
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Project-based business classes provide an introduction to the real world

Ava French models a dress for her business, Keep It Going, which turns used clothes into fresh pieces. French used her skills from the business classes to start Keep It Going.

Ava French models a dress for her business, Keep It Going, which turns used clothes into fresh pieces. French used her skills from the business classes to start Keep It Going.

MURIEL STATMAN / SAGAMORE STAFF

Ava French models a dress for her business, Keep It Going, which turns used clothes into fresh pieces. French used her skills from the business classes to start Keep It Going.

MURIEL STATMAN / SAGAMORE STAFF

MURIEL STATMAN / SAGAMORE STAFF

Ava French models a dress for her business, Keep It Going, which turns used clothes into fresh pieces. French used her skills from the business classes to start Keep It Going.

Muriel Statman, Staff Writer

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Most students start their classes the same way: they walk in, sit at their desk and wait for their teacher to walk in and begin a lecture or lesson. In Business Management, however, students stream through the doors, find their groups, and start independently working on a variety of innovative projects.

Business classes offered at the high school are taught in an unconventional and stress-free way that allows for students to explore business as a potential career pathway. While taking the class, many students have also started their own businesses.

Currently, the high school offers four business classes all taught by business teacher Brittany Stevens: Business Management, World of Money, Psychology of Marketing and English for Entrepreneurs.

Although these classes may seem similar to traditional academic classes, Stevens allows the students to take the lead when designing their own projects.

“The three electives are taught in a similar way in that I try to get students to learn by doing projects as much as possible,” Stevens said. “So they are bringing their own interests; they are working in teams pretty frequently.”

According to Stevens, students join business classes for varying reasons and many don’t have their heart set on business school.

“I often see two types of students,” Stevens said. “One is that they have an interest related to a career pathway in business because someone showed them that career path, or they have a family member who works in that career path. Others come in because they like current events and reading about business or because they want to start a business.”

Freshman Ava French said she joined Business Management because she thought that it could be a fun and interesting class. French enjoys the atypical way in which the class is taught.

“It’s less structured, so we have more freedom to do what we want. Today my group isn’t doing the class assignment. We are just working on building up our business. We are working on setting up a website, setting up a Paypal, Venmo, stuff like that,” French said.

At the beginning of the year, Stevens assigned her students a project to create an original business and pitch it to her. French and her group mates were the only group that decided to keep going with their idea.

French and her group mates made a business called Keep It Going. They buy old and cheap clothes from thrift stores and revamp them to eventually sell them online. They have a website and Instagram where the post their clothes.

“We thought that we had a good idea, and we all thought that it was something that we could do,” French said. “We wanted to do it because it was something interesting and fun, and we thought we could pull it off.”

Sophomore Charlie Krakauer, who is currently in the Business Management class, also believes that business classes are more applicable in the real world than most traditional academic classes.

“Before this class I didn’t think that I could be interested in business as a career,” Krakauer said. “Now that I know more about it and see that it’s interesting then I’d say there is definitely more of a chance.”

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