High school students in the Sachem Central School District are receiving real-world business experience as part of the Virtual Enterprise class. In its third year at Sachem, the Virtual Enterprise class teaches upperclassman valuable business skills as they navigate each aspect of a complete business plan.
Guided by teacher Keith McCaffery, Sachem High School East has two student-run business firms and High School North has one firm, led by Business Chairperson Thomas Sullivan. Students at both schools have the opportunity to earn college credits as they continue through the program.
At the beginning of the full-year class, each student submits a résumé and interviews for their desired position within the firm. The virtual business mirrors a traditional organizational environment and is broken up into different departments, including human resources, marketing, sales, finance and information technology, which are all overseen by a management team.
Students collaborate to develop a business name, logo, website and various promotional materials such as brochures, business cards, product catalogs and a commercial. High School North’s virtual business, Mobuilt, is a technology company focused on selling cutting-edge devices whose products include televisions, cell phone cases and drones. The firm’s flagship product is a pair of shoes that generates energy with each step that is used to charge your cell phone.
2-Pure International, one of the Sachem High School East-based firms, is a culturally driven meal delivery service. The business provides traditional meals from countless cultures around the world, such as Latin American empanadas and bratwurst from Germany. The business offers a subscription service ranging from one to 12 months aimed to expand their customers’ cultural palate.
In addition, High School East students created a second firm called U-Create. This company is a monthly box subscription service that provides products to customers at a lower price by bundling items. Customers can choose from four categories including beauty, pets, fitness and technology. The monthly subscriptions are broken up into three options, bronze, silver and platinum, which represent the number of items per box.
“Virtual Enterprise allows us to take our business where we want it to go,” said senior and Mobuilt CEO Jeanine Cerqueira. “Whether it is technology, clothing or both, we can use our ideas to expand the market.”
As part of the Virtual Enterprise class, the student businesses competed in a business plan competition and trade show at Farmingdale State College. The student firm competed against 35 other student-run firms for a chance to attend the Virtual Enterprises International Business Plan Competition taking place in New York City Apr. 16, at the Microsoft Technology Center.