OLYMPIA, Wash., April 19, 2016—From a pool of more than 583 applicants nationwide, five Washington state high school seniors were among the 100 winners of a Young Entrepreneur Foundation Scholarship award from the National Federation of Independent Business, America’s largest and leading small-business association since 1943.
NFIB’s Young Entrepreneur Awards are designed to reward and encourage entrepreneurial talents among high school students. “These young entrepreneurs are the future of small business in America,” said Molly Young, Director of the Young Entrepreneur Foundation. “We are impressed year after year with the quality of these hard-working, innovative high school students who are making their entrepreneurial dreams happen.”
Ninety-five of the graduating high school seniors will receive $2,000 toward their college and university costs. Five students are in the running for the top Young Entrepreneur of the Year scholarship of $25,000 and the $15,000 Dan Danner Scholarship. The remaining three finalists will receive a $10,000 Young Entrepreneur Award. A special ceremony announcing the five will be held in Washington, D.C. on June 23.
The Washington state winners were:
- Shawn Hice of Washougal, who attends Camas High School and received an NFIB/DeWils Industries Young Entrepreneur Award of $2,000. Hice’s enterprise is Logic Core Corporation. “We are proud to support the next generation of America’s free enterprise,”said Tracy Wilson of DeWils.
- Anthony Humay of Sammamish, who attends Eastlake High School and received and NFIB/Washington State Leadership council Young Entrepreneur Award of $2,000. Humay’s enterprise is called Midzy. “We are incredibly excited to have such innovative minds in our communities,” said Mark Peterson, chairman of the NFIB/Washington Leadership Council and owner of H&H Furniture in Yakima. “The best way to ensure a strong entrepreneurial environment is to encourage those starting out. We need a strong bench.”
- Jordan Larsen of Olympia, who attends River Ridge High School in Lacey and received an NFIB/Linda Matson Young Entrepreneur Award of $2,000. Larsen’s enterprise is BMJL Landscaping and General Labor.
- Riley Martin of Kirkland, who attends Juanita High School and received an NFIB/Washington State Leadership Council Young Entrepreneur Award of $2,000. Martin’s enterprise is Zukie Paws Pet Care.
- Serena Peterson of Selah, who attends Selah High School and received an NFIB/Betty and Steve Neighbors Young Entrepreneur Award of $2,000. Peterson’s enterprise is SHUSH Boer Goats. “It’s an honor to help students who are balancing class work and on top of that, starting a business,” said Betty Neighbors, founder of TERRA Staffing. “We’re glad to help ignite their free enterprise spirit.”
Washington state YEF Scholarships were financed by the donations of NFIB members. Each of these contributions was then matched by Visa Inc. to provide more reward for these deserving young entrepreneurs. Since 2003, the NFIB Young Entrepreneur Foundation has awarded more than 2,700 scholarships totaling $2.7 million. This year, NFIB’s Young Entrepreneur Foundation awarded $270,000 to deserving young entrepreneurs. Each award is between $2,000 and $25,000. The scholarships are used to help with tuition costs for the winners’ post-secondary education.
To qualify for an NFIB Young Entrepreneur Award, students must be seniors in high school who own and/or operate their own small business. They are required to write an essay describing their entrepreneurial endeavors and future goals. NFIB members around the country interview the applicants for the Young Entrepreneur Awards.
A full list of this year’s winners, as well as past winners, is available here.
The NFIB Young Entrepreneur Foundation is a 501(c)(3) organization promoting the importance of small business and free enterprise to the nation’s youth. More information is available at www.NFIB.com/YEF. The Foundation is associated with the National Federation of Independent Business; NFIB is the nation’s leading small-business advocacy association, with offices in Washington, D.C. and all 50 state capitals. Founded in 1943 as a nonprofit, nonpartisan organization, NFIB gives small- and independent-business owners a voice in shaping the public policy issues that affect their business. NFIB’s powerful network of grassroots activists send their views directly to state and federal lawmakers through our unique member-only ballot, thus playing a critical role in supporting America’s free enterprise system.
National Federation of Independent Business/Washington
711 Capitol Way South, Suite 505
Olympia, WA 98501