Business Program for Local Students

Chamber News

 

The Pennsylvania Free Enterprise Week (PFEW) program, an award-winning summer economics program now in its 40th year, immerses rising high school juniors and seniors in the world of business, allowing them to experience firsthand what businesses face each day. Offered by the Foundation for Free Enterprise Education, PFEW was founded specifically to teach students about the American private enterprise system. PFEW annually holds five week-long sessions in July and August on the campuses of Lycoming College and the Pennsylvania College of Technology in Williamsport, serving nearly 2,200 students and 250 volunteers each year.

At PFEW, participants are grouped into management teams of junior executives who have been hired to turn around under-performing manufacturing companies. These teams, mentored by adult volunteers, operate their firms for a computer-simulated three-years, competing against other student companies, formulating production and financial strategies, developing income statements and balance sheets and preparing marketing and advertising campaigns, all while reacting to a variety of external factors.

The Chamber proudly supports PFEW and encourages local companies and civic organizations to provide sponsorships for students and, if possible, volunteers for the sessions. Every student attends PFEW on a fully tax-deductible $625 scholarship (the actual value of the scholarship exceeds $1,500) which is provided by a local firm, foundation, civic organization, or individual. PFEW is also an approved Educational Improvement Organization through the PA Educational Improvement Tax Credit (EITC) program. Scholarship donors are prominently recognized in several publications circulated throughout the state, and each student wears the name of his or her sponsor on a photo identification badge throughout the week. Students also write a thank-you letter to their sponsors after graduation to report on what they have learned.

The Foundation for Free Enterprise Education has also expanded its programming to include the Stock Market GameTM, an interactive in-school game for students in grades four through 12 that teaches them about the Stock Market and Securities Industry. For more information on how to support or get involved with SMG, please call Jeremy Kropf, Technology and Projects Manager at (814) 833-9576, ext. 4, or email jeremy@pfew.org.

To learn more about the PFEW program, call Scott Lee, vice president of marketing and development for the Foundation for Free Enterprise Education at (814) 833-9576 ext. 8, or email scott@pfew.org.

PFEW is open to all current sophomores and juniors in Pennsylvania and information on attendance, as well as program applications, can be found at pfew.org. Questions can be directed to Amber Goss, Schools Manager for PFEW, by calling (814) 833-9576 ext. 6, or emailing amber@pfew.org.