Minyi Jiang, a sophomore at Annie Wright Upper School, hopes to work on Wall Street some day. Since she doesn’t think books alone will fully enable her to see the real world, she hopes to gain a deeper, more authentic understanding of economics and finance from one of her school’s signature programs, The Girls’ Business and Entrepreneurship Program.
Started this year, the program challenges girls to engage more deeply in areas where women have been historically under-represented. It provides opportunities for authentic connection with the business and non-profit community throughout the Puget Sound area.
Over three years, students will visit local business organizations and business colleges at select universities; receive mentoring; and explore the fundamentals of starting and building a business, including defining a business model, accounting, recruiting, management, marketing, and social ventures.
The scope and location of learning expeditions will take shape and evolve to incorporate the interests of each student. By the end of their senior year, each student will have a comprehensive portfolio. Along with their many after-school business and entrepreneurship activities, it will include an externship and a personal project.
The biggest benefit for the girls is having a mentor working with them one-on-one every step of the way, says the program’s director, Sandra Forero Bush. She’ll be the one mentoring Minyi as she maps out a path to achieve her long-term goal, identifies local mentors, and grows her circle of support. Wall Street might want to pay attention.