As the sun rose over St. Cloud State University, the students and staff of Minnesota Business Venture began preparing for the incoming 143 students from all over Minnesota. When students arrived they were greeted by enthusiastic CEOs (returning students) and BestPrep staff.
After checking in students received a name tag, a binder, a camp T-Shirt, and a pre-packaged goody bag. They were sent inside Case-Hill Hall where they were given time to settle into their rooms. Apprehensive but excited, students began to file into Garvey Commons for lunch. Seeing as many students arrived alone, lunch was also a good way for them to make new connections and find other people in their company.
At 1:00 everyone gathered in the Atwood Ballroom for the opening session. Amanda Labo, MBV’s Program Manager, started off the meeting by introducing herself and the other MBV staff members. The dorm monitors took it over from there and performed a few short skits to review the code of conduct.
Next, one of the second year CEOs, Faith Goetzke, introduced the kickoff speaker, a Senior Vice President of UnitedHealth Group, Adam Cohen. Adam stressed how every day he finds three things that he is grateful for and he encouraged the students to do the same. He discussed what type of culture the students should strive for in their companies and in everything they do. Some of the key factors Adam mentioned in his speech were energy levels, state of mind, focus, thinking big, and learning how to prioritize. He wrapped up by having the students write “I will…” and then finishing the sentence with a goal they have for their week at MBV.
The CEOs and RBLs (Resident Business Leaders) then met with their companies, got to know one another a bit and then began brainstorming company slogans in Centennial Hall. Next the students had the opportunity to interact with other RBLs during “Meet Your RBLs”. Students sat with their companies and an RBL would talk to them about their career path. The students were able to ask questions about college, the RBL’s job, or life in general. After 7 minutes the RBLs rotated which gave the students gave the students the opportunity to meet 7 of the 13 RBLs.
After a quick dinner back in Garvey Commons the students returned to Centennial Hall to find a bit of a surprise. In the lobby of each floor there were miscellaneous items scattered around the floor. The companies then elected a spokesperson for the “Junk Draft” to pick out items of junk. After a quick game of Rock, Paper, Scissor to determine who would chose first, the companies collected their items. After collecting 9 items, the companies made a commercial using all of their items as either props or as part of the product they are advertising for. The RBLs voted on the products and the winner received a goody bag and bragging rights. This year “Company I” won with their product, “Sing-A-Broom”.
After a long day of activities, the students had some free time to socialize, play volleyball, play games in the basement, or just wind down. This was also a time for students to make connections outside of their companies and get ready for an even busier day of camp tomorrow.