The following press release was issued August 18, 2014.
Khalifa Phrams AND Trebor Patrick – NEWARK AREA HIGH SCHOOL STUDENTS - WIN $1,000 FOR STARTUP BUSINESS PLAN AND CHANCE TO PITCH BUSINESS PLAN IN SILICON VALLEY
Newark Mayor Ras Baraka, Business Leaders Encourage Youth Entrepreneurship
NEWARK – After completing a free, 80 hour summer entrepreneurship training Khalifa Phrams and Trebor Patrick, both 17, pitched a panel of local business leaders their idea for customized basketball equipment and walked away with $1,000 and a chance to advance to a national competition in Silicon Valley.
"The BizCamp was a great experience,” Patrick said. “I learned a lot within the two week program, took advantage of the incredible opportunity I was given to develop a business idea, and it paid off! I am now excited about where this experience may take me in the future."
Phrams attends Bard High School Early College Newark and Patrick attends David Brearley High School in Kenilworth, New Jersey.
The competition – run by the Network for Teaching Entrepreneurship (NFTE ) and funded by the Citi Foundation through a $1.5 million grant investment – was held at the Newark campus of Rutgers University on Friday, August 15 in a day-long event highlighted by remarks to the aspiring entrepreneurs by Newark Mayor Ras Baraka.
The finals of the business plan competition were the conclusion of the Newark BizCamp a free summer entrepreneurship education completed by 40 Newark-area high school students. The camp was one of approximately two dozen camps held around the country run by the Network for Teaching Entrepreneurship (NFTE) and funded by Citi Foundation. The program is a key program component of the Citi Foundation’s Pathways to Progress  initiative, a three-year, $50 million commitment to jumpstart the career readiness of 100,000 young adults in 10 U.S. cities.
“One of the key ways we enable today’s young people to connect with tomorrow’s economic opportunities is by building their professional and personal skill-sets,” said Brandee McHale, Chief Operating Officer of the Citi Foundation. “Through this unique opportunity, these students are turning their dreams, creativity and drive into a reality. The budding entrepreneurs are a testament to the great work of our partners, including NFTE and Newark’s business leaders , who have enabled youth in the city to gain new skills, expand their entrepreneurial mindset and better prepare for a 21st century workforce.”
The NFTE national business plan competition – the National Youth Entrepreneurship Challenge – will be held in Silicon Valley on October 9. More than 40 regional winners from around the country will compete and