Nonprofit Minding Our Business to Host 2015 Business Plan Competition

Mercer County Middle School Students to Compete for Cash Prizes
Finalists from the 2014 MOB Business Plan Competition
Finalists from the 2014 MOB Business Plan Competition
LAWRENCE TOWNSHIP, N.J. - July 20, 2015 - PRLog -- Minding Our Business (MOB), a nonprofit organization that has been recognized as one of the premier youth entrepreneurship programs in the nation, will host its 2015 Business Plan Competition on Wednesday, July 29 with Mercer County middle school students competing for top prizes.

The event, which is free to attend, will be held from 7:00 to 9:00 p.m. at Sweigart Hall Auditorium on the RiderUniversity campus where MOB is headquartered. MOB began in 1997 as a community outreach program of RiderUniversity’s College of Business Administration and received its own 501(c)3 designation in November 2012. The MOB Summer Program, which targets low-income youth, provides intensive entrepreneurship training to its participants while improving their reading, math, and communication skills. The program culminates with these students launching and promoting their business ventures during Market Fairs at several sites in Trenton, including the Trenton African-American Pride Festival on August 15.  MOB was recognized in 2008 and in 2009 by the National Summer Learning Association as a program finalist in the Excellence in Summer Learning Award competition. In 2009, the program was the National Winner of the Best of Best Practices Award in Entrepreneurship Education at the Small Business Institute National Conference in Florida.

The competition will spotlight all the MOB Summer Program participants, ages 11 to 14. All the participants will develop an entrepreneurial venture and business plan prior to this competition. The students with the ten best plans will be invited to formally present at the Business Plan Competition for prize awards. Last year’s winner of the MOB Business Plan Competition, Beyonce Layne, a 14-year-old student from Trenton said of her experience, “All I can say is that I went into the MOB ring like a rookie and came out like a champ! MOB gave me an opportunity to create my own jewelry business, Sparkles and Sparkz, as well as a true purpose. MOB helps kids stay positive about their futures. It has been a great bridge to start crossing toward my future.”

Business leaders and VIPs largely from the MercerCounty community serve as judges for the Business Plan Competition. Dr. Elad Granot, who recently began his position as the Dean of the College of Business Administration at RiderUniversity, will welcome the students, parents and supporters in attendance and also serve as a judge of the competition. Supporters of this program include the PSEG Foundation, the Princeton Regional Chamber of Commerce Community Fund, Sam’s Club, the Nordson Corporation Foundation, ETS, The Rose Group, Janssen Pharmaceuticals, Wells Fargo, AT&T and Investors Bank. Sponsorship and advertising opportunities for the Business Plan Competition are still available, and tickets for a VIP reception are on sale for $100 each and can be purchased on  All money raised through tickets sales, sponsorships and ad sales will be used toward scholarships for the MOB Summer Program.

Since its launch, MOB has coached and mentored more than 3,500 students on starting and running their own businesses.  In addition to its Summer Program, MOB also offers an after-school Service Learning Program for middle school students in Trenton. Because of the success of the Service-Learning Program, MOB piloted this program in two more cities in New Jersey year— Asbury Park and Perth Amboy.  All of MOB programs emphasize entrepreneurship training, as well as math, reading, communication and life skills. For further information about Minding Our Business and the Business Plan Competition, please or call Executive Director Kevin Wortham at 609-731-9311.

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