Virtual enterprise makes business learning real (Reviews)
The students work together in their companies. Each young person has a role in the business that is essential to the proper functioning of the business and is empowered to understand the different functions of the business, often moving up through the ranks during their two-year streak.
Room 104 is still buzzing. Just like my student-run journal class, Virtual Enterprise (VE) is student-led with West Hempstead High School teacher Michael Silberman leading students on how best to grow their businesses.
VE is a class that brings the business world to high school. At West Hempstead High School, students can choose to take the course in Grades 11 and 12 and the more they invest, the more their learning increases exponentially, as does their leadership skills. Silberman believes that “the students take ownership of their business. This is the only way for them to be successful. Weekly progress logs and monthly calendars keep them focused on their work [in class]. “
In this age of accountability, VE is another example of real-world learning engaging students in real and meaningful ways. This CTE program embraces a student empowerment philosophy that nurtures necessary skills and engages every learner in an authentic way.
Recently the VE class participated in the National Elevator Pitch Competition. This competition allows student entrepreneurs “to give consumers a brief 60-second sales pitch about who you are as a virtual business and what you sell,” according to top-ranked CEO Sydney Hoffman 10 percent nationally with his company.At your service”(AYS) pitch. The other student company that received an honorable mention was A hand .
“The elevator pitch competition is managed by the vice president of project management. Competition dates are set by VE International and the PM determines who will be involved in speaking, scripting and filming. There is an online column that they follow to prepare for the event, ”explained Silberman.
According to Silberman, “The students who worked on this project for At your service were Sydney Hoffman, CEO (the student who was in the video) and Mark Liebl, VP of Project Management, who wrote the script and filmed the pitch. For A hand, it was Shyla Burrell, a video by Milton Hernandez and a screenplay by Briana Bhola and Samantha Giuffre.
Sydney Hoffman said: “I really enjoyed being a part of this experience and being able to achieve this victory for our company. I was honored to be able to represent AYS in the field and I am very happy with the results.
The real-world skills VE promotes for students are essential for modern learning. Hoffman added, “We worked really hard on how we wanted to paint our business through our pitch and see that our message was received and honored means the world to us. This experience really taught me that if you are resilient in your job, you will be successful. Everyone who was involved in the filming, editing and recording of this pitch got a taste of what it really looks like to make a legitimate elevator pitch. It also gives us better ways to manage our time.
Upon reflection, Hoffman concluded that “if [she] could do this experiment again, [she] certainly would have given more time to film and work in the field during our class time.
Silberman is in his 6th year of teaching VE at West Hempstead High School. “Our biggest changes over the past few years are that we have added several real-world activities: hosting the LI Trade Show and Alumni Day. We are also now traveling to Virginia for three days, which we started last year. Finally, we have definitely raised the bar on work-product based on the competitive nature of the class (students love to win prizes) and they follow the class for two years. [giving them more time to dig deeper]. “
Dan Rehman, Assistant Superintendent of Curriculum and Education at West Hempstead Union Free Schools, said: “The beauty of VE is the idea that students learn by doing. Although VE takes place at school, students are involved in a global business simulation. VE is a collaborative, project-based environment and focuses on other skills such as communication, creativity and critical thinking. All classes should be imbued with these ideas. We have seen students thrive in this type of learning environment.
As we continue to develop our programs so that students gain more project-based learning experiences throughout their school days, we talk to students and determine their interests as a starting point. Next, [we will] work with teachers to develop course descriptions and administrators to budget. Once approved, a curriculum can be created that could then be implemented and revised as needed, according to Rehman.
The Virtual Enterprise is proof that real-world project-based learning promotes student engagement and quality learning experiences. These practices can be implemented in every classroom, level and content area as appropriate, provided that support is in place to ensure the successful launch of this implementation.
Until then, we can expect to see good things from VE students when they attend these upcoming events: Hofstra CTE 11/17 Conference, LI Trade Show 1/4 & 1/5, VA Trade Show 3 / 5-3 / 7, NYC 04/17 and several online competitions.
In what ways can we bring real-world learning into every classroom to promote the skills needed for this generation? Please share.