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Elementary school students create scholarship at WVU business school with lemonade stand proceeds

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Budding entrepreneurs from Morgantown, W.Va.-area elementary schools are pictured promoting their Lemonade Day event in late April. WVU’s College of Business and Economics holds the event annually through the BrickStreet Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship and the WVU Entrepreneurship Club. The youngsters created a scholarship with the proceeds from the event. 
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Each year, less than a football field away from the College of Business and Economics, elementary school-aged students from the area near West Virginia University put forth their best entrepreneurial efforts on Lemonade Day. And each year, the group of participating students gets to decide where their proceeds will go.

This year, the group of budding entrepreneurs took the project to a whole new level, deciding to create a scholarship with their Lemonade Day efforts for a WVU business school student interested in entrepreneurship.

“Lemonade Day was such a great success this year,” said Julia Bolt, assistant director of the BrickStreet Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship. “The group worked very hard, and then came to the conclusion that it wanted to award a scholarship to a B&E student interested in being an entrepreneur. It really touched everyone’s heart, but it was also a very visionary thing to do.”

Good deeds tend to prompt more good deeds. A member of the B&E faculty, who asked not to be identified, matched the funds raised this year to create a second year for the scholarship to be awarded. Organizers said they are confident the scholarship will be in existence for years to come, thanks to these students.

There are actually two parts to Lemonade Day, the first being an academic session on entrepreneurship. The second part is operation of the lemonade stand, which fortunately occurred on a particularly pleasant late-April day on the WVU campus. WVU’s downtown campus in Morgantown was one of several cities across North America to celebrate Lemonade Day. The event is supported by WVU’s BrickStreet Center at the College of Business and Economics and the WVU Entrepreneurship Club.

“It was really cool that we got to raise money for a scholarship,” said Jack Boyd, a fifth grade student at Cheat Lake Elementary School in Morgantown. “The money will go to a student who’s interested in starting a business. It was fun to be a part of that.”

Bolt said the initiative shown by the aspiring entrepreneurs was impressive. The up-and-coming members of America’s business force asked passers-by to support their cause — $1 at a time.

“This experience just keeps getting better,” Bolt said. “We taught elementary school students about entrepreneurship, and they went right out and showed us their skills. They raised money, decided to award a scholarship and then a member of our faculty decided to match the amount the kids raised. There are so many great lessons to learn from this, and these elementary school students have put brand new meaning into Lemonade Day on the WVU campus.”

For more information on the WVU College of Business and Economics, follow B&E on Twitter at @wvucobe or visit business.wvu.edu.

-WVU-

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CONTACT: Patrick Gregg, WVU College of Business and Economics
patrick.gregg@mail.wvu.edu; 304.293.5131

Follow @WVUToday on Twitter.