TurningPoint Executive Search sponsors Junior Achievement Pitchfest 2015
SAN DIEGO, CALIFORNIA, March 10, 2015 – For the second year in a row, TurningPoint Executive Search is serving as a sponsor and mentor for the annual Junior Achievement Company Program – “The Next Big Thing”. Ken Schmitt, Founder and President of TurningPoint Executive Search and the Sales Leadership Alliance, is proud to be involved once again. “With the help of the corporate community, this year’s program is supporting more teams than ever before with 26, spanning nearly 10 high schools around San Diego.” Each team is comprised of high school students, who spend 13 weeks learning about what it takes to conceptualize, fund, build, staff, support and ultimately “sell” a real-world company. “This year’s landscape is incredibly diverse”, explained Tanya Johnson, Senior Education Manager at Junior Achievement “spanning everything from custom grip tape for skateboards, to a portable wind turbine mounted on the roof of your car that will harness wind energy to charge a battery, to a specialized phone case that keeps your earbuds from getting tangled. The creativity of these teen-agers is unlimited.”
Garrett Colbert of Turnkey Strategic Relations, joined forces with TurningPoint two years ago to provide additional mentorship. “The creativity, energy and enthusiasm the students have for the JA program could not be higher. We point the students in the right direction, and they took off running. Every school should be participating in this program and this has been an extremely rewarding experience!”
With names like “Bust”, “LifeSupport Chargers”, “Untangled” and “First Capsule”, the investors from the PEERS Network – a non-profit launched nearly 10 years ago by socially conscious entrepreneurs – were tasked with deciding whether or not to fund these companies from a pool of money donated by the investors themselves. Now that the companies have pitched their business ideas, the real excitement will occur in the classroom, as teachers volunteer to lead each class and work with the outside mentors to educate the students on what it’s like to build and run a company. “The kids were so inspired” explained Jeannie Chufo, English teacher at Canyon Crest Academy, after the Pitchfest. “Both teams received the highest funding of all the pitches and now they are ready to execute and write up the detailed business plan.”
“I feel so privileged to support such an incredible program in the San Diego community” says Schmitt. “To be able to participate as a sponsor and mentor is incredibly fulfilling. These kids are far more confident and polished than I ever was at their age!” This year, several other high profile companies are joining TurningPoint Executive Search as team sponsors including Willis, Dealstruck, Cymer and San Diego County Credit Union.