BestPrep’s Communications and Events Intern, Keagan Eng, spoke with Noor Naseer, an incoming Minnesota Business Venture (MBV) student leader for the summer 2021 program. She currently attends The Blake School in Minneapolis and works as the Co-Editor-in-Chief for the high school’s newspaper. Noor attended MBV last summer and is looking forward to volunteering as a student leader, or CEO, this summer to guide a group of students, or “companies,” through the program. Noor provided insight into her experience with MBV, as well as her takeaways from the program.
Q: Why did you choose to attend MBV last year?
A: I chose to attend because it seemed like a really unique opportunity to learn about what goes into a business and all the different moving parts. It also aligned really well with my work as a DECA officer at my school, and I wanted to hear from speakers about what it’s like to “go into business” because that phrase can seem kind of vague.
Q: What product did your MBV company innovate, and how did your group come up with this idea?
A: The product my company innovated was the Clearable Cover Up. It came as a solution to a lot of problems we all shared when thinking about masks. Masks were relatively new during MBV last year, and they weren’t nearly as commonplace as they are now. The Clearable Cover up was unique because it came in a clear material, so hard– of– hearing people could read lips, and it also came in a breathable cotton material to ensure comfort. Additionally, the nose wire fit snugly against wearers’ noses and the straps were adjustable. [Within my company], I was Chief Operations Officer, so I worked closely in figuring out what we needed and how we were going to get it.
Q: Who was your favorite speaker(s) at MBV?
A: My favorite speaker at MBV was Jesse Ross from The Minneapolis Foundation. During his speech, “Empowerment”, he asked us three questions:
- What do you want from/for your life?
- What are you willing to start/stop to get it?
- Who’s counting on you?
These are questions that I find really grounding. School, sports, and extracurricular activities can become really overwhelming, and it’s easy to lose sight of what my goal is. Asking myself these three questions reminds me why I’m doing what I’m doing.
Q: What is your biggest takeaway from your experience at MBV? What did you learn?
A: My biggest takeaway is that “business” can mean a lot of different things. It can be super concrete, like coming up with a product, which is what we worked on in our companies. Or, it can be much more unique to individuals, like the work Jesse Ross and John Thomas (of the Minnesota Timberwolves and Lynx) do, both of whom were speakers during my session. I think I really learned how to express my ideas in a way that other people could understand and how to work with people I’ve never met. At school, it’s easy to get too comfortable with the people around you, so it was good for me to be pushed out of my comfort zone.
Q: As the Editor-in-Chief of your school newspaper, what kind of responsibilities do you have?
A: In this role, I answer questions from writers, photographers, and editors and make sure that everyone is meeting their deadlines. I also resolve conflicts and take on others’ work as my own if they drop the ball. In addition to this, I edit two pages myself, which means I brainstorm articles, assign writers to write them, edit them, put them on the page, and find graphics to go along with the articles. Also, I write at least one (usually around three) article each cycle. The knowledge I gained from MBV has helped me at the newspaper to motivate my peers, engage with them, and express and support my ideas and proposals.
Q: What is your advice for other high school students looking to attend college or enter the workforce soon?
A: My advice would be to make sure that you care about everything you do because if you’re not passionate about your extracurricular activities it can be super draining.
We are excited to have Noor back at Minnesota Business Venture 2021! The program will be held virtually July 12-15 and July 26-29. Learn more and sign up today!