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Harvard District 50 to launch business program for high schoolers

Harvard High School Principal Carl Hobbs.
Harvard High School Principal Carl Hobbs.

Harvard High School students will have a new opportunity to learn about entrepreneurship and develop business plans and connections through a new program at the school. Harvard’s Chamber of Commerce Director Crystal Musgrove will help lead the INCubatoredu program, along with teacher Erin Harris. Musgrove will help cultivate business connections for the program.

“I am excited to be the community champion for the incubator,” Musgrove said. “I look forward to representing the Chamber of Commerce as well as the business leaders in promoting a great program for our kids.”

The incubator program will offer students an entrepreneurship experience and allow them to develop business plans under the guidance of local business leaders. Curriculum will teach students the lean startup business model and help develop soft skills. The goal is to create a product that can be invested in and produced. Student teams will create prototypes and pitch their ideas to investors as part of the course.

“The students will be learning by doing,” Harris said. “I am excited to teach INCubatoredu at the high school.”

The program will launch in the upcoming school year. Private donors have helped fund the creation of an incubator classroom and new equipment. The Harvard Community Education Foundation recently award the district a $30,000 grant to help pay for the program. Woodstock District 200 also offers a business incubator program. The program is in its second year and recently held its year-end business pitch event.

Harvard High School serves grades nine to 12 and has an enrollment of about 678 students.

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