Senior Product Manager
Date: August 8, 2022
For Immediate Release
(Wichita, KS) – Sanction applications may now be submitted for the 10th Annual Youth Entrepreneurship Challenge (YEC) Series. YEC is a sequence of community-based entrepreneurship competitions for students in grades 6-12, culminating in a state championship. Last year, YEC featured 51 local-level competitions featuring 1,057 high school and middle school students from all across Kansas. More than $90,000 in prize money was awarded to winners.
“The 2022-2023 YEC Series was the biggest year for YEC,” said Bailee Henry, Senior Product Manager of Entrepreneurship (E-) Community Programs. “The exponential growth of YEC has reiterated that there is a hunger for youth entrepreneurship in Kansas. Through this program, students learn practical life skills that will continue to benefit them throughout the rest of their lives. By investing in our youth, we are investing in the future of Kansas.”
New this year, 26 communities in northwest Kansas are eligible to receive funding to help cover YEC-related expenses thanks to a $30,000 grant by the Dane G. Hansen Foundation. The foundation granted $30,000 to cover sanction fees and prize money to ensure regional participation and equal access to the YEC series. The support helps to strengthen the entrepreneurial ecosystem and provide the region's youth with valuable knowledge and experiences.
Sarah LaRosh, Director of Entrepreneurship Engagement with NetWork Kansas states, “This has been a dream of mine for YEC to be as common in area schools as debate, basketball, or drama. The skills youth learn though the YEC process helps in all areas of life. I firmly believe that this grant and the partnership with NetWork Kansas will be life changing for many students in Northwest Kansas. This is a tremendous opportunity for Northwest Kansas and I am honored to be part of this.”
NetWork Kansas, a statewide entrepreneurial organization, coordinates YEC and has released new materials to help support series coordinators including updated guidelines for the competition and the release of a new overview video produced by Sprout Communications: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nUjsSbMt75k.
Key dates for the 2022-2023 competition year include:
· November 11, 2022 – Deadline for YEC Series online sanction applications due to NetWork Kansas
· March 20, 2023 – Cut-off for sanctioned community entrepreneurship competitions to be held
· March 20, 2023 – Wildcard Entries for KEC State Championship Due
· March 31, 2023 – Executive Summaries for KEC State Championship Due
· April 20, 2023 – KEC State Championship
For more information or to register an event for sanction consideration, please visit: https://goventuredash.com/series/680
NetWork Kansas, a 501c3 nonprofit organization, is dedicated to making entrepreneurship a priority for economic and community development in the State of Kansas. NetWork Kansas connects aspiring entrepreneurs, emerging and established businesses, to a deep network of business-building and community development resource organizations across the state. NetWork Kansas facilitates the development of an entrepreneurial ecosystem within participating communities through the E-Community Partnership. Contributing factors to successful development include the availability of financial capital, support by local leadership, and development of educational resources. All of these factors combine to increase entrepreneurial activity in participating towns, leading to increased startup activity, business expansion, job creation, and more. NetWork Kansas is also the home of e2 Entrepreneurial Ecosystems (e2) and Entrepreneurial Growth Ventures. Visit: www.networkkansas.com.