Press release from National Federation of Independent Business:
JACKSON, May 7, 2012 – The National Federation of Independent Business Young Entrepreneur Foundation has announced the Mississippi recipient of the 10th annual NFIB Young Entrepreneur Awards, a scholarship program designed to reward and encourage entrepreneurial talents among high school students.
Tishomingo County High School senior Haley Brown of Iuka has received a $1,000 NFIB Young Entrepreneur Award.
She owns Cupcake Couture.
“It’s hard for anyone to keep a small business going, but it's even harder when you have homework, too," said Ron Aldridge, state director of NFIB/Mississippi, the state's leading small-business association.
“While some of Haley's classmates were working for other people, she was working for herself," Aldridge said. "We're very proud of her, and we know she'll do great things."
The NFIB Young Entrepreneur Award recipients will attend the university, college, community college or vocational/technical institute of their choice with $1,000 to $10,000 in tuition assistance from the NFIB Young Entrepreneur Foundation.
The program was established to raise awareness among the nation's youth about the critical role that private enterprise and entrepreneurship play in the building of America. Since 2003, the NFIB Young Entrepreneur Foundation has awarded 2,300 scholarships to graduating high school seniors totaling more than $2.5 million.
More than 500 students nationwide applied for a YEF scholarship this year. NFIB is awarding 131 scholarships to young entrepreneurs across the country, thanks to the financial support from numerous small business leaders, corporate and foundation supporters.
“The entrepreneurial spirit is alive and well in America, and we at the NFIB Young Entrepreneur Foundation could not be more confident in our next generation of business owners,” said Kurt Summers, chairman of the NFIB Young Entrepreneur Foundation Board of Directors. “We are extremely impressed with the quality of applicants who have applied for this year’s awards; our five finalists reflect the best of what our young innovators have to offer. Each young man and woman has exhibited an incredible drive for success, and I congratulate each of them for their accomplishments.”
During the NFIB Small Business Summit in May, the Young Entrepreneur Foundation will honor five students selected as $5,000 scholarships winners and name, from among the finalists, the “2012 Young Entrepreneur of the Year” who will be awarded a $10,000 scholarship.
To qualify for a YEF Award, students must be running their own business. They were required to write an essay describing their entrepreneurial endeavors and future goals. Standardized test scores, GPA, and class rank were also considered in the selection process. NFIB members around the country nominated applicants for the Young Entrepreneur Awards. An independent, outside committee selects a group of qualified semi-finalists.