Future Entrepreneurship Challenge prepares students for careers in business, engineering

By Shreya Partha

Bay Area Youth Career Opportunities (BAYCO), a local student-run organization that connects youth with career opportunities, and the FUHSD Foundation introduced last month the Future Entrepreneurship Challenge – a startup competition for high school students. The event ran through workshops held on Jan. 18, Jan. 25 and Feb. 1. 

The bootcamp allowed students to learn entrepreneurial skills like how to create a company, collaborate with others and communicate with investors, business liaison for BAYCO and HarmonyPlus correspondent Sathvika Gopalasetty said. Students also received guidance from venture capitalists and Silicon Valley executives.

“This year, BAYCO decided to host a startup competition called the the Future Entrepreneurship Challenge to allow students in the Fremont Union High School District to experience the highs, lows, fun and pressure of life at a startup,.”

The workshop was intended to create an environment different from the typical classroom to educate students about business principles, events coordinator at BAYCO and HHS sophomore Tishani Weerasuriya said.

Since the students were working with business professionals and experts, the event also provided a more informative and educational experience, Weerasuriya said. 

“[The event] equips you with public speaking and interpersonal skills, which I think is important,” Weerasuriya said. 

It also provided access to a variety of resources that helped students solve many different issues, superintendent Polly Bove said.

“You can solve all kinds of problems,” Bove said, “like how [to] bring water to a place that doesn’t have water.”

Additionally, students were able to build confidence in their skills, Gopalasetty said. 

“Students emerged with a keen understanding of what it takes to start a business, and greater self-confidence in themselves as leaders and entrepreneurs,” Gopalasetty said. “Winners were awarded certificates and a free tour at Airbnb.”