HOW TO TEACH YOUR KID TO BE AN EN­TRE­PRE­NEUR

Inc. (USA) - - FRONT PAGE - BY TOM FOSTER PHO­TO­GRAPHS BY JONNO RATTMAN

IN­SIDE THE GROW­ING ED­U­CA­TION MOVE­MENT that’s TRAIN­ING KIDS TO BE EN­TREPRENEURS

ON A CLOUD­LESS OC­TO­BER morn­ing in Austin, hun­dreds of peo­ple stroll the grassy aisles be­tween a half­dozen rows of white tents, where en­trepreneurs sell ev­ery­thing from iced cof­fee to pot­tery to hand­made dog treats, pick­les, and gluten­free baked goods. One booth sells se­cu­rity soft­ware, and one sells wooden vir­tual re­al­ity head­sets. At another, Baker Bros De­signs, which sells sta­tionery and change jars printed with psy­che­delic paint swirls, a hand­some young man in­tro­duces him­self and ges­tures to his younger brother—“the artist.” He hands me a busi­ness card that lists their Etsy page in case we want to buy more.

This is no hip­ster flea mar­ket. The sell­ers are kids as young as 5 years old. We’re on the oak-shaded

grounds of the Pease Man­sion—also known as Wood­lawn— a leg­endary white-columned ed­i­fice atop a hill in the city’s toni­est his­toric district. The house be­longs to Jeff San­de­fer, a bil­lion­aire Texas oil­man, and his wife. Three decades ago, he be­gan ed­u­cat­ing en­trepreneurs at the Univer­sity of Texas; later, he and oth­ers launched the in­de­pen­dent Ac­ton School of Busi­ness, which runs an MBA pro­gram. Then he and his wife co-founded Ac­ton Academy, a pri­vate Austin K–12 school that has spun off af­fil­i­ate lo­ca­tions in 25 other cities as far-flung as Kuala Lumpur; 26 more are slated to open this year. He also started, as an off­shoot of that school, the Ac­ton Chil­dren’s Busi­ness Fair, a small but fast-grow­ing se­ries of events like the one here at his house, where kids aged 5 to 15 spend half a day sell­ing goods and ser­vices they cre­ate.

There were 17 af­fil­i­ated Chil­dren’s Busi­ness Fairs in the U.S. in 2016. San­de­fer ex­pects there to be 50 this year. “That’s all with zero PR—just word of mouth,” he says as he sur­veys the scene on his lawn: 110 booths manned by 230 lo­cal kids, who’ll sell to about 2,300 cus­tomers. The cute­ness goes without say­ing—it’s your neigh­bor­hood lemon­ade stand on steroids—but San­de­fer sees some­thing more im­por­tant hap­pen­ing.

Across the U.S., a nascent move­ment is ed­u­cat­ing kids in the pre­cepts of en­trepreneur­ship. In Austin alone, there are foun­da­tions, af­ter­school pro­grams, sum­mer pro­grams, high school classes, and more. “I re­cently tried to put a list to­gether of ev­ery­one in Austin do­ing some­thing around youth en­trepreneur­ship. It was three pages long,” says Leigh Christie, ex­ec­u­tive di­rec­tor of the En­trepreneurs Foun­da­tion of Cen­tral Texas, which runs sev­eral youth pro­grams in­clud­ing Lemon­ade Day Austin (the name ex­plains it), which is the lo­cal off­shoot of a Hous­ton-born pro­gram that now op­er­ates in 60 cities. This month, South by South­west will fea­ture mul­ti­ple ses­sions about youth en­trepreneur­ship and a youth startup pitch com­pe­ti­tion.

One of Austin’s most am­bi­tious pro­grams is what’s be­ing billed as the na­tion’s first K–12 pub­lic school en­trepreneur­ship track, at David Crock­ett High School and its feeder el­e­men­tary and mid­dle schools. The pro­gram cul­mi­nates in an in­cu­ba­tor class in which teams of stu­dents launch busi­nesses and com­pete for fund­ing, fol­lowed by an ac­cel­er­a­tor class in which they run the busi­nesses. The Crock­ett pro­gram, now in its sec­ond year, was in­spired by a four-year-old high school–only pro­gram in subur­ban Chicago, at Bar­ring­ton High School. Mem­bers of Bar­ring­ton’s busi­ness and ed­u­ca­tion com­mu­ni­ties cre­ated a non­profit, INCu­ba­toredu, to li­cense its in­cu­ba­tor-class cur­ricu­lum to schools around the coun­try, and more than 60 schools in 13 states have signed up.

At a time when Mark Zucker­berg and Elon Musk en­joy rock-god sta­tus and fam­i­lies gather to watch Shark Tank, it’s no sur­prise that we’d start nudg­ing our kids to­ward be­com­ing busi­ness creators. It’s a pow­er­ful thing, after all. You call the shots. You solve prob­lems and in­vent things. You cre­ate jobs.

As Inc. read­ers know, though, en­trepreneur­ship isn’t kid stuff. It takes courage and re­silience. Most new busi­nesses don’t make it. It’s long been widely held that founders are born, not made, and a re­cent study by re­searchers at Lon­don’s King’s Col­lege found some ge­netic ev­i­dence to sup­port that idea. Whether or not that ar­gu­ment holds—ev­i­dence is thin—

en­trepreneur­ship is not for ev­ery­one, so why act like it is?

To Vic­tor Hwang, VP of en­trepreneur­ship at the Kauff­man Foun­da­tion, the an­swer is simple. Work has changed. We all must be­come en­trepreneurs, or at least like en­trepreneurs. “The school sys­tem has long taught for in­dus­trial jobs: how to find a job, how to fill a job. But the jobs of the new econ­omy are ones where you have to be en­tre­pre­neur­ial.” The youth en­trepreneur­ship move­ment, he says, is “more pri­mal than a pop­u­lar trend; it’s a re­sponse to macroe­co­nomic forces.”

“The idea that you go work for IBM for 30 years and get a pen­sion is an­ti­quated,” says Craig Shapiro, as­so­ciate su­per­in­ten­dent for high schools in the Austin In­de­pen­dent School District, a po­si­tion he as­sumed after start­ing the Crock­ett pro­gram, Stu­dent Inc. “By the year 2020, 40 per­cent of the jobs will be en­tre­pre­neur­ial in na­ture. Yet we have a fac­tory-

“WE waNt theM tO say, ‘Hey, i sOlD sOME­thiNg aND MaDE sOME MONey. That was fuN, aND i waNt tO try agaiN.’ ” JEFF SAN­DE­FER, whose ded­i­ca­tion to ed­u­cat­ing en­trepreneurs has played a big role in mak­ing his na­tive Austin a cen­tral player in such ef­forts.

style ed­u­ca­tion sys­tem that doesn’t pre­pare kids” for such a world.

What Shapiro, San­de­fer, and the oth­ers lead­ing this youth en­trepreneur­ship move­ment are do­ing doesn’t look like fac­tory-style ed­u­ca­tion. It looks messy. It of­ten looks du­bi­ous—much as star­tups do. Some­times, as at the Ac­ton Chil­dren’s Busi­ness Fair, it looks in­spired. For­get the too-fa­mil­iar ques­tion: Can en­trepreneur­ship be taught? The one these new ini­tia­tives pose is sub­tler, and far more sig­nif­i­cant: Can en­trepreneur­ship—and, more im­por­tant, the traits that un­der­pin suc­cess­ful en­trepreneurs—be learned?

WHEN JEFF SAN­DE­FER was a teenager in Abi­lene, his oil­man dad in­sisted he spend a cou­ple of sum­mers do­ing man­ual la­bor in the oil fields. The sum­mer be­fore his se­nior year, he was work­ing on a crew of day la­bor­ers who re­painted oil-field stor­age tanks. He no­ticed that many of the crew spent only about a third of their time ac­tu­ally work­ing. “So I came up with this idea to start a com­pany and hire our high school foot­ball coaches, who weren’t work­ing in the sum­mer,”

he re­mem­bers. “They had the pickup trucks to haul equip­ment, and they could bring in their play­ers.” Cru­cially, he de­cided to pay by the tank painted, not by the hour. Vet­eran la­bor­ers painted one bat­tery of tanks ev­ery three days. The coaches started paint­ing three a day. “It was nine times more pro­duc­tive at prob­a­bly a 10th of the cap­i­tal cost!” says San­de­fer. The busi­ness made roughly $100,000 in profit that sum­mer, he says.

It wasn’t un­til much later that San­de­fer, who’s 56, re­al­ized he’d grown up in an en­vi­ron­ment that fos­tered the in­sight that made that suc­cess pos­si­ble. “I grew up watch­ing my dad do deals in oil and gas,” he says. “The talk around the din­ner table was sell­ing and deals, and I used to think ev­ery­one had that ex­pe­ri­ence and knew what I did.” At an early age, he would go to his neigh­bors to ask if they had junk they wanted hauled out of their garages, and then hold a garage sale to sell it.

“I was an as­set fox,” he says. The in­stinct per­sisted: He made a half-bil­lion dol­lars by the time he was 30 by de­vel­op­ing wells that the oil giants deemed too small to bother with.

He’s dis­cussing his path while sit­ting at a small con­fer­ence table in the ad­min­is­tra­tive of­fice of the Ac­ton Academy. Nearby is a book­shelf packed with ti­tles like The Lean Startup, by Eric Ries, and Dis­rupt­ing Class, by Clay­ton Chris­tensen, along­side a stack of slim books called A Field Guide for the Hero’s Jour­ney, which San­de­fer wrote with Robert Sirico, a Catholic pri­est from Michi­gan. (San­de­fer was on the board of Sirico’s Ac­ton In­sti­tute for the Study of Re­li­gion and Lib­erty, which gave San­de­fer’s ven­ture its name.) The “hero’s jour­ney” is San­de­fer’s term for pur­su­ing a “life of mean­ing,” another fa­vorite phrase. To him, en­trepreneur­ship is do­ing some­thing you’re good at, that you en­joy do­ing, and that the world needs (or at least that peo­ple will pay you for). Much at the Ac­ton Academy is built to fur­ther that pur­suit. As at a Montes­sori school, Ac­ton teach­ers are guides—in fact, that’s what they’re called—who put kids to work on projects and then point them to re­sources to solve prob­lems on their own. Those re­sources in­clude on­line sim­u­la­tion games San­de­fer paid to have de­vel­oped, in which play­ers learn to spot pro­duc­tion bot­tle­necks in a fac­tory, or com­pete to sell water without get­ting into a price war. (He de­vel­oped the games for his MBA school but has found his younger pupils ben­e­fit from them too.)

To San­de­fer, the most im­por­tant thing about the Chil­dren’s Busi­ness Fair is that the kids show up and launch and run some­thing for a day. “We want them to just say, ‘Hey, I sold some­thing and made some money. That was fun, and I want to try again.’ That’s the spark that leads to ev­ery­thing else.”

One of San­de­fer’s fa­vorite stu­dent sto­ries is that of Reese Young­blood, a preter­nat­u­rally well-spo­ken eighth grader who last year made $3,000 profit at the three-hour busi­ness fair sell­ing hand-il­lus­trated sta­tionery she de­signed. In pre­vi­ous years, she says in an airy class­room across a man­i­cured yard from the Ac­ton of­fice, she drew pas­tel por­traits, sold in­digo- dyed caf­tans, pon­chos, and scarves, and part­nered with her brother to sell scav­enger-hunt kits. “I’ve al­ways been an artist—that’s just what I like to do,” she says. “The busi­ness fair helped me find ways to link en­trepreneur­ship and my pas­sion for art.” She now sells her de­signs on sta­tionery and jour­nals in two Austin bou­tiques.

While few of the dozen Ac­ton mid­dle school­ers I meet have Young­blood’s sin­gu­lar fo­cus or her trac­tion to­ward build­ing a real busi­ness, what they’re learn­ing is just as im­por­tant. Tate Staker, a sev­enth grader, has par­tic­i­pated in the fair for five years, mostly sell­ing games he de­signs. This year, it was a board game, Mana­tee War­fare, and it sold out well be­fore the end of the event, Staker says. He also learned about the down­side of fear­ing sunk costs. “It cost me a lot to make each game—I had cards printed off this web­site, and got boxes and dice,” he says. “So I didn’t buy as much as I could have, and that stopped me from mak­ing as much profit as I could have. If I had bought more, it would have been bet­ter, but I was afraid my sunk costs would be too high.”

But spe­cific busi­ness in­sights aren’t re­ally the point, San­de­fer says; the process is what mat­ters. Ev­ery four to six weeks dur­ing the school year, Ac­ton stu­dents take on a dif­fer­ent project— one is ex­plic­itly en­tre­pre­neur­ial—and ev­ery week they have dif­fer­ent “de­liv­er­ables” re­lated to the project. For the en­tre­pre­neur­ial project, those de­liv­er­ables might be: cal­cu­late your costs per item; cal­cu­late how much of each ma­te­rial you’ll need, and how much you’ll need to sell to profit; de­sign the prod­uct; and de­ter­mine how you’ll test it, pack­age it, and mar­ket it. Work­ing at their own pace, they prac­tice sub­jects from math to art, as well as crit­i­cal think­ing, self-mo­ti­va­tion, and pub­lic speak­ing.

Of course, the stu­dents at Ac­ton come from house­holds that push them to achieve. Staker’s fam­ily moved to Austin from Hawaii solely to send him to San­de­fer’s school. Though the Chil­dren’s Busi­ness Fair is open to all kids, San­de­fer knows his ef­forts aren’t reach­ing a huge chunk of un­der­priv­i­leged com­mu­ni­ties. If youth en­trepreneur­ship ed­u­ca­tion aims to help a gen­er­a­tion nav­i­gate a new world, it will need to go a lot wider.

ACROSS TOWN AND a world away from Ac­ton’s im­mac­u­late cam­pus, David Crock­ett High School is a blocky, mid-’60s build­ing that houses 1,500 pri­mar­ily His­panic and lower-in­come stu­dents. Less than a decade ago, it was in dan­ger of be­ing shut down, be­set by fre­quent fights and poor aca­demic per­for­mance. In 2008, the district hired a young prin­ci­pal from the Bronx in New York City, Craig Shapiro, and since then, the school has be­come a cel­e­brated suc­cess. With the launch of the Stu­dent Inc pro­gram two years ago, Crock­ett has emerged as a model for other lo­cal schools.

Adam Miller, one of two in­struc­tors for the in­cu­ba­tor class, strides to the front of room 150, a win­dow­less for­mer lec­ture hall ren­o­vated to look like a startup of­fice, com­plete with rolling white­boards, stand-up ta­bles, and mo­du­lar seat­ing clus­ters. The 45-year-old Miller, who can only be de­scribed as the cool teacher—tou­sled hair; mo­tor­cy­cle boots and skinny brown jeans; says “Awe­some!” a lot—gen­er­ally wan­ders from group to group, like Ac­ton’s guides, keep­ing stu­dents on task and act­ing as a sound­ing board.

It’s a week un­til fi­nals, but Miller re­minds the 20-some kids that, rather than take an exam, they’ll turn in their MVP ( Lean Startup– speak for “min­i­mum vi­able prod­uct”) slide decks so they can be ready to pitch their com­pa­nies after win­ter break to a panel of founders, who will give them feed­back. “You’ll be work­ing on that to­day,” Miller ex­plains. “Next Mon­day, we have a coach com­ing in to talk about mar­ket siz­ing. She’ll share some in­for­ma­tion that you can in­clude in your decks.” The pro­gram en­lists lo­cal en­trepreneurs as men­tors and guest lec­tur­ers. “OK, guys. Get to work!”

To­day’s class, of ju­niors and sopho­mores, is the first to go through Crock­ett’s in­cu­ba­tor pro­gram. Their year will cul­mi­nate in a Shark Tank– style pitch com­pe­ti­tion to score $2,500 grants from lo­cal VC firm Not­ley Ven­tures; next year, they’ll run their com­pa­nies in an ac­cel­er­a­tor class.

That’s the cap­stone to Stu­dent Inc, which be­gins in el­e­men­tary school with a pro­gram called Mi­croso­ci­ety, in which the whole school runs a mock small town com­plete

with busi­nesses and gov­ern­ment agen­cies, and holds reg­u­lar mar­ket days in which the town comes to life. In mid­dle school, kids on the en­trepreneur­ship track run an on-cam­pus store that sells school-spirit gear such as T-shirts and bean­ies.

It’s a sprawl­ing plan, with many more pit­falls than an an­nual fair, and its launch hasn’t been easy or smooth.

“It took three months to get the kids out of the or­der-taker model, where they ex­pect us to tell them what to do,” says Shapiro. The school has had trou­ble at­tract­ing a di­verse group to the pro­gram; the kids so far skew male and white, and most come from the ad­vanced-place­ment pro­gram. Among the feeder el­e­men­tary and mid­dle schools, sev­eral have strug­gled to im­ple­ment the new pro­grams. For their part, some stu­dents com­plain that things seem dis­or­ga­nized, that lessons aren’t aligned with their busi­nesses’ stage of devel­op­ment. One says that “we feel like we’re be­ing forcibly dragged through the cur­ricu­lum.”

Still, there have been clear suc­cesses. Last year, a group of sopho­mores par­tic­i­pated in a city-run pro­gram called Re­Verse Pitch, com­pet­ing against grownup en­trepreneurs to present po­ten­tial busi­ness ideas to reuse waste ma­te­ri­als that would oth­er­wise end up in land­fills. The Crock­ett stu­dents made it to the fi­nal round of the com­pe­ti­tion, with a plan to turn un­sellable glass­ware from Good­will into land­scape pebbles. This year, three stu­dent groups par­tic­i­pated in Re­Verse Pitch, and one of them has con­tin­ued to de­velop its idea for the in­cu­ba­tor class: Re- Cover Austin, which will turn dis­carded vinyl street ban­ners into shade canopies for food-truck parks.

“Food trucks are an ex­pand­ing mar­ket—there are 2,000 in Austin now,” ex­plains Isaac Estrada, one of the stu­dents work­ing on Re- Cover Austin, who says he’s slipped into the role of keep­ing ev­ery­one on task. “We think we can get low-cost la­bor to sew them into canopies”—ide­ally, he hopes, by part­ner­ing with the Mul­ti­cul­tural Refugee Coali­tion, which pro­vides op­por­tu­ni­ties for in­ter­na­tional refugees as they set­tle in Austin. Estrada says he’s shy and would seize up in front of groups, but now he speaks with a ca­sual con­fi­dence that surprises even him: “Get­ting up in front of peo­ple to pitch was some­thing I never would have been able to do last year, and I have done it twice this year.”

Another stu­dent, Kain Evans, used to sleep through his classes and bring home C’s and D’s, but the Stu­dent Inc classes have “pretty much changed my life,” he says. “I used to think I would grow up and get a restau­rant job and then work my way up the cor­po­rate lad­der like my par­ents did, but this has in­spired me to want to go do my own thing.” Over the sum­mer be­tween sopho­more and ju­nior years, he says, “there were morn­ings I’d wake up and go, ‘That’s a good idea—why isn’t that a busi­ness?’ And I’d write down fi­nan­cial plans and lo­gis­tics and take them to my friends. We’d toss ideas back and forth all sum­mer like that.”

Other stu­dents have floun­dered. One pitch a group shows me in­cludes a se­ries of Pow­erPoint slides, all empty but for la­bels like “Ti­tle” and “Fi­nan­cial Model”— de­spite the loom­ing due date. Of the eight groups in the class, Miller says, four or five have gelled and be­gun the tran­si­tion from “sit­ting around com­ing up with ideas to re­ally chas­ing them down.” One of his big­gest tasks is light­ing a fire un­der all of the groups, but he ad­mits that ul­ti­mately it comes down to that un­der­ly­ing drive: “It’s easy to be a wantrepreneur, but it takes a spe­cial kind of stu­dent to make that leap.”

MILLER’S POINT re­turns to the big ques­tion: Does it take in­nate en­tre­pre­neur­ial traits— pas­sion, vi­sion, risk tol­er­ance, per­sis­tence, and lead­er­ship—to make that leap? Maybe, but maybe less than you would think. Re­searchers at the Univer­sity of Min­nesota have shown, for in­stance, that ge­net­ics can pre­dict suc­cess­ful lead­ers only about 30 per­cent of the time. To put this dif­fer­ently, in most cases peo­ple learn to be lead­ers— and even when an en­tre­pre­neur­ial trait ap­pears to be in­nate in some­one, it may still be learned by some­one else. Just as San­de­fer’s child­hood mon­ey­mak­ing schemes were likely spurred by table talk at din­ner, what and how kids learn in school are likely to af­fect their chances of be­com­ing en­tre­pre­neur­ial. What drives pro­grams like the Chil­dren’s Busi­ness Fair and Crock­ett’s Stu­dent Inc is an aim to de­velop the traits of en­trepreneur­ship, re­gard­less of what ca­reers the stu­dents ul­ti­mately choose.

The very mis­sion of INCu­ba­toredu, the cur­ricu­lum Crock­ett li­censed from the group in Bar­ring­ton, Illi­nois, puts it plainly: “En­tre­pre­neur­ial skills are valu­able to stu­dents, whether they see them­selves go­ing into busi­ness or not. In

the real world, where simple an­swers are few and far be­tween, where change is con­stant, com­pe­ti­tion is fierce, and the ca­reers of to­mor­row aren’t yet known, stu­dents armed with an en­tre­pre­neur’s toolkit will have a dis­tinct ad­van­tage.”

Still, Mil­len­ni­als have, so far, lagged be­hind those their age in pre­vi­ous gen­er­a­tions when it comes to cre­at­ing busi­nesses, ac­cord­ing to the Kauff­man Foun­da­tion, de­spite its be­ing cheaper and eas­ier than ever to start a com­pany. Can these pro­grams help re­verse that slide for Gen-Zers? The ex­pla­na­tions for this short­fall usu­ally in­volve a hang­over from the re­ces­sion and crush­ing lev­els of stu­dent debt. Shapiro, the for­mer Crock­ett prin­ci­pal, pro­poses an ad­di­tional ex­pla­na­tion: a na­tion­wide over­re­liance on tests that push schools to teach lit­tle more than ba­sic facts. “We went to the stan­dard­ized test­ing regime” a gen­er­a­tion ago, he says. “Here are your prod­ucts.”

“The U.S. beats it­self up and says our math and science scores are test­ing lower than other coun­tries’, and we should fo­cus on that, but it doesn’t play to the ad­van­tages the U.S. has,” says Vic­tor Hwang, the Kauff­man Foun­da­tion VP. “Where the U.S. has ex­celled is in find­ing an­swers where there’s am­bi­gu­ity. The chal­lenge is that there are no good es­tab­lished met­rics for that. How do you mea­sure cre­ative in­stinct or en­trepreneur­ship, com­ing up with a prod­uct that no­body else thought was pos­si­ble? That’s what these pro­grams are mov­ing to­ward ad­dress­ing.”

It’ll be years be­fore any­one knows if the new ap­proach turns out more en­trepreneurs, but in the mean­time a pro­gram in At­lanta can demon­strate some eye-pop­ping early suc­cesses. Be­gin­ning in 2015, the Ful­ton County School Sys­tem part­nered with Ju­nior Achieve­ment to cre­ate a school-within-a-school con­cept called JA Academy. The school re­cruits com­pa­nies to pro­vide case stud­ies from real-life busi­ness is­sues they’ve faced, and then builds the en­tire cur­ricu­lum around them. (Cisco, for in­stance, ques­tioned whether to keep its TeleP­res­ence busi­ness.) JA Academy kids an­swer ques­tions raised by the case stud­ies us­ing what they learn in their math, science, read­ing, writ­ing, and so­cial stud­ies classes. In that con­text, solv­ing some al­ge­bra equa­tion isn’t merely an ab­stract ex­er­cise. It’s an in­te­gral part of solv­ing a real-world prob­lem.

The first JA Academy school, Ban­neker High, was one of the worst per­form­ers in the district when the pro­gram be­gan. Com­pared with their peers, in one year, Academy stu­dents there re­duced their ab­sen­teeism by 75 per­cent and their dis­ci­plinary events by 90 per­cent. The av­er­age Academy fresh­man en­tered the year with sixth grade math and read­ing skills, fin­ished the year at the ninth grade level for both, and outscored his or her co­horts else­where in the state on tests.

“If you think about how we tra­di­tion­ally ap­proach high school ed­u­ca­tion, it’s fo­cused only on teach­ing sub­ject mat­ter and not on prac­tic­ing those skills and cre­at­ing and in­no­vat­ing and trial and er­ror and ris­ing above ad­ver­sity,” says Jack Har­ris, pres­i­dent and CEO of JA’s Ge­or­gia di­vi­sion. “In our view, it’s these higher-or­der think­ing skills that are the miss­ing piece.”

Back in Austin, Shapiro says he isn’t sur­prised when

I cite JA Academy’s early re­sults, and echoes Har­ris on the im­pli­ca­tions. “I give you two kids. One grad­u­ates with top grades, has a lot of book knowl­edge, and knows how to score an A on a test,” he says. “The other has built a busi­ness and maybe broke even on it, knows how to go out and hus­tle, did a cou­ple of in­tern­ships, and has a grow­ing net­work. You’re an em­ployer. Which one do you want to hire?”

“i’D writE DOwN fi­NaN­Cial plaNs aND takE theM tO My frieNDs. WE’D tOss iDeas BaCk aND FOrth all suM­Mer likE that.” KAIN EVANS, flanked by Es­merelda Barrientos and Isaac Estrada, be­tween classes in the in­cu­ba­tor pro­gram at Crock­ett High.

THE COOL TEACHER

Adam Miller, who teaches en­trepreneur­ship for the Stu­dent Inc pro­gram at David Crock­ett High School.

THEY MEAN BUSI­NESS

Mid­dle school­ers hard at work at Austin’s Ac­ton Academy. There are Ac­ton Acad­e­mies in 25 other cities through­out the world, in­clud­ing Kuala Lumpur, San Sal­vador, and Lon­don, On­tario. Twenty-six more are slated to open this year.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from USA

© PressReader. All rights reserved.