OBHS is 3rd out of 80 in Business Contest
At left, Oyster Bay High School Virtual Enterprise students hold up the $250 check they won for placing third in LIUPost’s regional Business and Entrepreneurial Leadership Conference. At right, students with Ms. Tara Beal, Oyster Bay High School business teacher, and Dr. Robert Valli, Dean of LIUPost’s School of Business.
Oyster Bay High School’s business students captured third place at the regional Virtual Enterprises International Business and Entrepreneurial Leadership Conference at Long Island University (LIU) Post, Oct. 25, proving their entrepreneurial chops against nearly 80 high schools throughout Long Island.
“We are beyond excited,” said Ms. Tara Beal, Oyster Bay High School’s business teacher. “This is a huge accomplishment for our virtual enterprise firm, Protech (t), as well as for the Business Department at Oyster Bay High School.”
Under Ms. Beal’s guidance, David Cohen, Chris Duras, Eduard Fait, Nico Galatio, Mia Giardina, Justin Gulbin, Brad Lopes, Michal Maznio, Terence Pyres and Jillian Vicari worked for weeks on perfecting a business plan and elevator pitch for Protech (t). The virtual company, addressing the significant increase in radiation exposure among 25-60 year olds, offers a series of protective cases for electronic devices by incorporating an electromagnetic shielding fabric capable of protecting users from 99 percent of radio frequency waves induced by wireless and Bluetooth connectivity.
Junior Jillian Vicari, acting as CEO of Protech (t), delivered the pitch in a preliminary round where three groups of about 25 firms presented their companies, and then pitched a final round with eight other finalists. A panel of judges made up of industry experts and academia from LIUPost evaluated the pitches based on delivery, how compelling and informative they were, and how clearly they defined their next steps. When it was announced that Oyster Bay placed third, Jillian was presented with a $250 check to continue the development of Protech(t) and was congratulated by Dr. Robert Valli, Dean of LIUPost’s School of Business, as well as the entire team.
“The whole experience was surreal,” Jillian said. “Oyster Bay is so small and we were competing against big schools, but I practiced the pitch a lot and after I did it, I knew I did my personal best. Watching my peers do their elevator pitches also helped me learn a lot from the experience.”
Throughout the day, students also participated in breakout sessions, choosing two topics, which included Financing a Business, Social Media Marketing, Analytics/Digital Engineering, Personal Branding / Leadership, and The Surprising Secret to Fundraising Success. The event also featured two keynote speakers. Marie Moody, Founder and CEO of Stella & Chewey’s Raw Natural Pet Food discussed the importance of not being afraid to fail and shared the following quote from Winston Churchill, "Success consists of going from failure to failure without loss of enthusiasm". The second speaker, Helen Avery, Social and Environmental Finance Editor at Euromoney magazine,discussed how sustainability should be a goal of all businesses and the importance of reducing your carbon footprint. She utilized the Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) chart as a visual representation and asked all firms to identify ways they can help.
Oyster Bay High School offers two full-year courses in Virtual Enterprise for students in grades 10-12 through its Business Department. In Virtual Enterprise 1, students experience every aspect of a business in a simulated environment by taking on “jobs” in human resources, accounting, production, distribution, design IT, marketing and sales. Students gain an understanding of how employees, workplace teams and departments interact with one another and collaborate to achieve company goals. In Virtual Enterprise 2, students can continue their learning by taking on a new role within the virtual company. Students in both classes participate in competitions throughout the year and are eligible to receive college credit for a fee through one of Oyster Bay High School’s college partnerships.