Minnesota Business Venture Week 2 2023 – Dare To Dream

Today was our first day of bestprep’s Minnesota Business Venture Week 2 2023! We had 135 passionate students that came in from 59 different schools to St. Thomas University. We are so excited to welcome and help these students grow and learn throughout the week! 

Today’s theme is “Dare to Dream.” We are grateful for 3M for being one of our longtime partners, for sponsoring our first day of camp! Each day during MBV we will be having different themes and new sponsors by different companies! We are very excited to work with our sponsors this week in which they make camp possible! 

After we welcomed our students and got them settled into their dorms, we kicked MBV off with our opening session where Bob Kaitz (The president and CEO of bestprep), and Jessica Cooley (Schulze School of Entrepreneurship Senior Director and Interim Associate Deam) talked to our students about the bestprep organization and gave us a little insight on the business world and the St. Thomas campus. They introduced us to our first keynote speaker of the week: Jesse Ross! 

He brought insights into what being a leader means and the changes we can make being a leader to our communities. He also mentions his experience throughout his challenges growing up and how these challenges helped find his passion for leadership and success. A takeaway that students took from Jesse Ross is how important goal setting is for life, this made students think about their future and dreams they want to be able to achieve in the future. A huge thank you to Jesse Ross for kicking off camp as our first keynote speaker! 

After our keynote, the students got assigned to their companies where they did some ice breakers and got to know each other. From there, they participated in a scavenger hunt where they went all around campus to find specific landmarks and learned facts about St. Thomas. Having this friendly competition at the end Company B won the scavenger hunt! 

After our scavenger hunt, our students had a small break for dinner and then we started one of our favorite activities at MBV: Junk night! We divided all the students into 2 groups and then had each company choose a student leader to pick 6 items from the pile of “junk”. From these items, each company works together and makes up a service or product to make a commercial skit. They have about 1 hour to complete the commercial skit. This is a fun way where MBV students can get creative and work together as a team efficiently. This challenges students to be open minded and improves their leadership, communication and participation.