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KIPP DC student-entrepreneurs awarded free trip to NYC to compete at Youth Business Summit

Future business leaders earned a chance to showcase their one-of-a-kind shoelaces concept at a national competition

WASHINGTON — You've heard the quote: Teamwork makes the dream work. 

Thanks to teamwork that is both inspired and inspiring, some student-entrepreneurs from D.C. are closer to achieving more of their dreams. 

A group of students from KIPP DC College Preparatory High School has been awarded a trip to New York City, all expenses paid. They'll have the chance to showcase a virtual business they created, one they've been running from their classroom.

The students are enrolled in KIPP's Virtual Enterprises program. As part of their studies, they created a virtual business called Generational Laces, which sells one-of-a-kind shoelaces. 

Think: unique designs, customizable creations. Slogan: Every great shoe deserves an even better pair of laces.

The students entered their business plan in regional competitions, at which they pitched their ideas to judges. A big goal was to qualify for the national competition at the Youth Business Summit later this year in New York.

Now, they've achieved that goal. What's more, they've just been awarded a grant that will pay for all of their expenses, made possible by the HSBC Opportunity Fund.

The summit will give students a chance to test-drive potential careers, network with other budding entrepreneurs and get some face-time with corporate executives. It's the kind of experience and exposure that entrepreneurs dream about.

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Jermoni Benson, a senior at KIPP, says the summit will give her classmates the opportunity to put into practice everything they've been learning in class. 

"I can say that this has definitely been the foundation. It has taught me business management, financial management, just how to work in a business setting. And I can say, it's really setting me up for success," Benson said. "I do see myself owning my own business."

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Learning and sharpening a set of business skills through hard work, creativity and determination. It's all paid off for the students at KIPP.

If you have something you'd like to share, email us at GetUplifted@wusa9.com or contact Allison Seymour on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.

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