MHS students put their business savvy to the test

Members of Mendota High School Team 1, which placed second in a Junior Achievement competition, left to right, are Braden McPheeters, Rafael Romero, Bria Frey and Abril Diaz. (Photo contributed)

Team 1 places 2nd in competition

OGLESBY – The next generation of business leaders from Geneseo, Kewanee, La Salle, and Mendota went head-to-head in the Drs. David & Agnes Palmer Junior Achievement Titan Competition on Nov. 10 at Illinois Valley Community College. Eight high school teams from Geneseo High School, Kewanee High School, La Salle-Peru Township High School and Mendota High School competed. Each team included four students and one business mentor (an adult community volunteer).

Students were given complete control to manage and operate a cell phone company through the JA Titan online business simulation. During the one-day competition, the teams were challenged to outperform the competition in profit, R&D, production, marketing & sales, and corporate social responsibility. Decisions made during the competition determined the success or failure of their virtual business. Such decisions include: setting the product price, how many items to produce, how much to spend on marketing, determine whether to expand production through capital investment, and how much money to spend on research and development.

After competing in a three-year business cycle, Geneseo High School Team 1 and Mendota High School Team 1 pulled away with the win. They advance to the Scholarship Round and will further test their business knowledge in an effort to win scholarship money for post-secondary education. Mendota Team 1 consists of Abril Diaz, Bria Frey, Braden McPheeters and Rafael Romero. Competing for Mendota Team 2 were William Bentley, Clay Buffington, Cameron Mora and Dominik Stamberger. The business mentor for both teams is Cheryl Stewart of Stewart Tax & Accounting.

The competition one of four Qualifying Rounds that took place throughout early November.  Junior Achievement of the Heartland hosted the Qualifying Rounds in Davenport, Dubuque, Muscatine, and Oglesby. Approximately 145 high school students from these communities and surrounding areas competed. The top performing teams from each Qualifying Round will advance to the Scholarship Round held at Palmer Center for Business Development at Palmer Chiropractic College in Davenport, Iowa on Nov. 16. A total of $10,000 in scholarship money is up for grabs for the top three performing teams. Vickie Anne Palmer is the title sponsor of the event in honor of her parents, Drs. David and Agnes Palmer.

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