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Submitted photo Abbe Hendrickx, a student at New York Mills High School, attended BestPrep's 32nd annual Minnesota Business Venture (MVB).

NY Mills student attends summer business program

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What do a tomato fight, the Timberwolves and a Salted Nut Roll have in common? They were all major topics at BestPrep's 32nd annual Minnesota Business Venture (MBV.)

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"Not only does MBV teach you leadership, business, and communication, but it also teaches you about yourself," Abbe Hendrickx, a student at New York Mills High School, said. "Presentations, company meetings and the people I met along the way made this experience great."

MBV is a business and career skills program held in partnership with the Herberger Business School at St. Cloud State University and the Donald McNeely Center for Entrepreneurship at St. John's University. More than 350 students representing 102 schools took a week out of their summer to prepare for life after high school, learn how to start their own business and improve their financial literacy skills.

More than 150 sponsors donated funds to support students' attendance. Farmers & Merchants State Bank made the opportunity available for Hendrickx.

Entrepreneurs and business professionals from around Minnesota volunteered to share their experiences and business insights with the future workforce. Students were met with a gamut of speakers from companies such as: College Nannies & Tutors, JK Clothing, the Midwest Tomato Festival, the Minnesota Timberwolves, Pearson's Candy Company, and Share Save Spend.

Local business professionals, known as Resident Business Leaders, served as mentors to the students throughout the program. These volunteers lived on campus for the week and guided a small "company" of students through the curriculum and interactive activities.

BestPrep's MBV has more than 10,000 program alumni. Andrea Hanson, the program's director, said "Minnesota Business Venture is a unique opportunity for high school students to gain skills that will help them in their future. The interviewing, teamwork and communication skills developed during the week help prepare students for success in school and the work world."

For more information about BestPrep, visit www.bestprep.org or call 763-398-0090.

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