Winner, 2008 National Youth Entrepreneurship Challenge
PopsyCakes  was founded by Jessica Cervantes when she decided to create an innovative cupcake on an edible stick in 2006 at the age of 16. Ever since her grandmother taught her how to bake, Jessica has loved measuring and tasting different ingredients - and mixing them up to see how her culinary creations would turn out. But it wasn't until Jessica became a part of the International Business and Finance Academy at John A. Ferguson Senior High school, that baking and business came together in a brand new recipe for success.
Jessica is now a student at the University of Miami, managing both her business and studies. She is currently majoring in Biomedical Engineering. She has hired a management team to continue to grow the company, and 5% of our profits are donated to NFTE so other students can get the same support that Jessica received.
|South Miami Basketball Academy
At age 14, Andres Cardona recognized the lack of affordable options for youth to improve their basketball skills in South Miami. Andres loved the game so much he decided to start South Miami Basketball academy, where he teaches the fundamentals of the game of basketball. It all began when Andres joined the NFTE program after his mother lost her job, and decided he was going to help the family financially. After a lot of hard work and with support from NFTE, Andres’s academy’s launch was so successful a competitor quickly wanted to buy it! Andres, however, had no interest in selling his business, as he wants to continue to let kids who have had trauma in their lives have an accessible outlet.
Currently, he attends Florida International University double majoring in finance and marketing. Andres recently launched his second business, PublicizeUs.com , to help small businesses develop websites and eCommerce.
| Jason Delgado Photography
3rd place, Miami Herald Student Business Challenge
Combining his passion for cars and photography, Jasen Delgado created AutoMotionPhoto , an automotive photography service. What originally started as a lifelong passion and hobby for photographing luxury vehicles quickly turned into a full-fledged business. As Jasen gained experience as a photographer and honed is digital editing skills, Jasen began to attract his first clients. Jasen’s first client, Autosport USA, a pre-owned luxury car dealership in Delray Beach, gave Jasen enough capital to purchase a Nikon DSLR camera, a necessity for professional photography. Over the next year, Jasen continued to build AutoMotionPhoto by attending trade shows and sending out direct mailings. The hard work paid off, and Jasen now has established customers ranging from dealerships such as The Collection and Xotic Dream Cars to Kartier Forged, a high-end wheel manufacturer.
Today, Jasen remains fully committed to his company, now operating under the name Jasen Delgado Photography, and is committed to continuing to build his brand’s reputation.
Winner, 2012 South Florida Regional Youth BizPlan Challenge
Jhasir Bermudez is a diligent 17 year-old who works 30 hours a week to help support his family, while staying in the top 1% of his class. He has always been inspired by his mother, who is an expert seamstress and taught Jhasir how to sew. When Jhasir enrolled in the NFTE class, he immediately saw an opportunity to develop his talent for sewing and design into a full-fledged business. Responding to the market for chemical-free children’s clothing, he developed Prasinos Princess, a business manufacturing organic cotton dresses for young girls.
Since winning the competition, he recently attended NFTE’s Start Up Summer Camp where he received further coaching, support, and mentorship as he prepares for NFTE’s national competition in October, 2012.
|Live Design Styles|
Channeling his passion for designing t-shirts into digital graphic and web design, Darnel Skepple launched Live Style Designs. Darnel got his start by designing custom T-shirts for other students at his high school, and developed his unique 3-D graphic design s