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Press Release

Eller Press Contact

Liz Warren-Pederson
Eller College of Management
520.626.9547
news@eller.arizona.edu
 

New Arizona Youth Entrepreneurship Award celebrates Arizona's entrepreneurial teens

Eller College of Management and 1st National Bank of Arizona partner to inaugurate Arizona Youth Entrepreneurship Award

TUCSON, Ariz. – DECEMBER 11, 2006 – The entrepreneurial spirit often begins at a young age. Junior Achievement statistics show that 70% of high school and middle school students would like to be self-employed at some point in their lives. Recognizing that teens don’t always have access to the resources needed to bring their business ideas to reality, the Eller College of Management is partnering with 1st National Bank of Arizona to launch the Arizona Youth Entrepreneurship Award.

Encouraging youths to pursue both their entrepreneurial dreams and a college education, the new award is designed to support the growing interest in business ownership among teens by providing resources and coaching. All participants will receive feedback on their proposals and recognition of their effort, and gain awareness of formal education opportunities in entrepreneurship available to them. Six finalists will be selected to present their business plans to a panel of business coaches at The University of Arizona on April 20, 2007. Each will receive a cash award and certificate.

“An entrepreneurial approach to strategy and problem-solving is essential to success in any industry,” said R. Patrick Lamb, president of the mortgage division of 1st National Bank of Arizona. “It’s important to encourage the entrepreneurial spirit in the next generation of business leaders, and this award does just that.” Lamb, a ’93 graduate of the Eller College of Management, pursued entrepreneurship in his undergraduate education and speaks from first-hand experience.

Any student enrolled in an Arizona high school is welcome to submit an application to the Eller College of Management by February 21, 2007. The applications will be reviewed by a panel of judges consisting of three Arizona business leaders, three current students in the McGuire Center for Entrepreneurship, and the dean of the Eller College, Paul R. Portney. The panel will select six finalists who will each be paired with a collegiate mentor. Mentors and finalists will work together to refine business concepts and prepare final presentations. Finalists will then come to The University of Arizona in April 2007 to compete at the annual McGuire Center for Entrepreneurship Business Plans Competition.

“Our students are very excited about the opportunity to coach the finalists,” said Sherry Hoskinson, director of the McGuire Center at the Eller College of Management. “Eller College students are always eager to encourage entrepreneurship and offer their insights into successfully developing product ideas. The annual McGuire Center Entrepreneurship Business Plans Competition will be a great event for the high school students to experience in their entrepreneurial journey.”

Thanks to the support of 1st National Bank of Arizona, each finalist will be recognized at the competition with a monetary prize. The three honorable mention awardees will each receive $500, third place will receive $1,000, second place will receive $1,500, and first place will receive $2,000. In addition, The Eller College of Management will match the awards with scholarships if the students enroll in The University of Arizona and declare a major within the Eller College.

Interested students enrolled in Arizona high schools can find more information, including application instructions, by visiting www.AZBizIdeas.com, or calling Anne Pagel, program coordinator in the Eller College Undergraduate Programs office, at 520.621.2505.

The application deadline is February 21, 2007.

1st National Bank of Arizona is the Southwest’s largest privately-held, family-owned banking institution and one of the state’s fastest growing companies. Headquartered in Scottsdale, it has more than 1,150 local employees and combined assets in excess of $4.0 billion. FNBA has 14 retail banking branches in the state, provides a full array of commercial loan services and is a mortgage lender in 49 states. The bank was named as Arizona’s top bank with more than $550 million in assets in the 2006 Ranking Arizona survey.

The Eller College of Management at the University of Arizona is internationally recognized for pioneering research, innovative curriculum, distinguished faculty, excellence in management information systems, entrepreneurship, and social responsibility. U.S. News & World Report ranks the Eller undergraduate program #11 among public business schools and two of its programs are among the top 20 — Entrepreneurship and MIS. U.S. News & World Report ranks the Eller MBA Full-Time program #48 in the U.S. The College is among the leaders of business schools generating grant funds for research. In addition to a Full-Time MBA program, the Eller College offers the 25th ranked Evening MBA program, the Eller Executive MBA and the Online MBA. The Eller College of Management supports more than 5,800 undergraduate and 750 graduate students on the UA campus in beautiful Tucson, Arizona, and a satellite campus in Phoenix.

Press Contact:
Liz Warren-Pederson, Eller College of Management
520.626.9547, news@eller.arizona.edu

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