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Teen Entrepreneurship Challenge to begin July 19


High school students can learn how to develop a business or product idea while earning a chance at a $1,000 top prize this summer through the Teen Entrepreneurship Challenge hosted by the Hazleton LaunchBox supported by Pasco L. Schiavo, Esq.

Open to rising high school sophomores, juniors and seniors, the Teen Entrepreneurship Challenge will run from July 19 to Aug. 9 with a pitch competition on Wednesday, Aug. 16. Classes will meet on Wednesdays from 10 a.m. to noon via Zoom. (Zoom information will be provided to participants following registration.)

The program is designed to teach students key strategies for launching a product or startup, how to act on their ideas and how to develop innovative solutions to problems. Students can participate individually or in teams.

The challenge concludes with a Shark Tank-style pitch competition where students will present their business or product ideas before a panel of judges from the local business community. A top prize of $1,000 will be awarded to the student or team that finishes in first place. The student or team that finishes second will earn a $500 prize.

Recent product ideas to win the challenge included layered gloves and shoes for children with a rare degenerative disease called ataxia-telangiectasia, a dance shoe equipped with LED lights and an athletic cleat with interchangeable soles that can be snapped in and out depending on the sport.

Students who don’t have a product or startup idea will work with Hazleton LaunchBox Entrepreneurship Education Coordinator William Andahazy or Entrepreneurship Facilitator Fermin Diaz throughout the program to develop their own.

The Teen Entrepreneurship Challenge is offered at no cost thanks to donations from Wells Fargo Bank and the Reading Blue Mountain and Northern Railroad to the Downtown Hazleton Alliance for Progress on behalf of the Pennsylvania Department of Community and Economic Development Neighborhood Assistance Tax Credit Program.

To register, contact Andahazy at 570-450-3135 or