Westbrook students at a business summit in New York City are, from left, Sharpman Muhirwa, Tom Lewis, Rodolphe Matonga, Jean Pierre Obiang-Mezang, former business student Bella Baker, Lily Daigle, Mustafa Salman and Aiden Taylor. They won a bronze with their sales pitch. Contributed / Brenda Dolloff

Business students
stand out at summit

Seven Westbrook Regional Vocational Center’s Tech II Business students attended the Virtual Enterprise Youth Business Summit in New York City last month. They became one of 30 teams from more than 230 to be recognized for their entrepreneurial sales pitch, earning bronze.

WRVC business teacher Brenda Dolloff prepared the students in a year-long entrepreneurial experience and Westbrook High School teacher Jonathan Whitehead assisted in chaperoning the students throughout their four days in Manhattan.

Dolloff said in a press release nearly 4,800 attendees and approximately 237 groups from eight countries took part in this culminating experience of the entrepreneurship program. “Throughout the 2023-2024 school year, the students developed a company (recognized as a ‘firm’ in the Virtual Enterprise program) called Whip ‘n Dip … a simplified, unique food delivery system. Students participated in national competitions on elevator pitches, e-commerce websites, video commercials and employee handbooks. They also created social media, applied for a business loan and managed finances for the project, according to the Dolloff.

By attending the Youth Business Summit, students were provided the opportunity to compete face-to-face with other firms, showcase their trade booth and interact with students from other states and countries like Brazil, Indonesia, Bulgaria and Romania.

Several of the students remarked on the usefulness of offering Virtual Enterprise experiences in all high schools, according to the press release. Lily Daigle found the coursework and summit to be a valuable opportunity: “I really enjoyed the experience and the amount of things that we got to see and do. I definitely think that VE should be offered in all high schools.”

Dolloff praised the professionalism, maturity and preparedness of the students. “To come away as one of thirty firms to be recognized – out of more than 200 – says a lot about how hard these students worked in this first year of the program. I couldn’t be prouder of how they accounted for themselves all year long and, especially, in New York City among more than 4,000 other students from around the world,” Dolloff said.

Rotary Club to hear from
Rock Row developer

Westbrook-Gorham Rotary Club will meet at 11:30 a.m. on Tuesday, May 7, in the Culinary Dining Room at Westbrook Regional Vocational Center, 125 Stroudwater St.

Co-owner Josh Levy of Waterstone Properties, developer of Rock Row in Westbrook, will be the guest speaker.

50 years ago

The American Journal reported on May 1, 1974, that Alderman Roger Knight’s bid to ban smoking in the city council’s chambers was unsuccessful. His motion did not have a second and it failed.

Comments are not available on this story.