Penn State SBDC to kick off SMART Girls camp with business startup seminar

Amanda Kelly, a student at Holy Spirit School in Absecon, New Jersey, showcased a project she and a teammate created with a 3D printer at the 2015 SMART Girls camp. Credit: Pennsylvania College of Technology / Penn StateCreative Commons

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. — The Penn State Small Business Development Center (SBDC) will present The First Steps of Starting a Business to 40 budding entrepreneurs at the Science and Math Applications in Real-world Technologies (SMART) Girls camp, June 20–24, at Pennsylvania College of Technology in Williamsport.

The camp provides girls in grades 9–12 the opportunity to experience science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) as a foundation for their future careers. Jennifer Riden, business consultant for the Penn State SBDC, will help show the girls how to write their own business plans as part of the “opening act” for the camp at 10:30 a.m. on June 20.

“The First Step of Starting a Business seminar is designed to help aspiring entrepreneurs to begin the process of successful business ownership. Topics include evaluating business ideas, developing a business plan and exploring financial options,” Riden said. “At the conclusion of the camp, students will be required to develop a business plan and replicate a product they believe can be successful in today’s economy. I will provide them with an outline to work from.”

Students will also get a chance to experiment with 3D printers, laser and vinyl cutters and digital fabrication in the Carnegie Science Center Mobile Fab Lab.

Alice Justice, SMART Girls camp organizer and counselor for Central Columbia School District, said the theme of the camp was created to inspire girls to go after STEM careers.

“I really believe this camp allows girls to explore how their passions can manifest themselves in the world of STEM,” Justice said. “We hope that their experience will teach them to embrace who they are and recognize that they should never let any preconceived notions keep them from considering any and all possibilities.”

To learn more about starting a business, visit the Penn State Small Business Development Center online.

Last Updated June 15, 2016