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Calverton Elementary Middle School
Baltimore, MD

  • Expertise in business management
  • Often uses the very Socratic “turn and talk” method to allow her students to discuss difficult concepts with one another
  • Asks her students to do online research on other young entrepreneurs with similar interests
  • Has served 1,200+ students in her nine years teaching NFTE curriculum

“I firmly believe my students need to be introduced to different ways they can earn money legally and have fun while doing it. Students in urban areas rarely see businesses owned by people who look like them…and I have to present many scenarios to prove to them that they, too, can accomplish business success.”

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Galileo Academy of Science and Technology
San Francisco, CA

  • Following Financials lessons, brought in the owner of a popular pizza restaurant to discuss his journey and break down the Economics of One Unit for his pizza
  • Incorporates websites like Weebly, LinkedIn, and Ebay into learning
  • Attended the NFTE National Challenge this year, to support his student, Suzy

“I was honored to take part in this life-altering opportunity for my student.”

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Antwerp, Belgium

  • Believes Mark Twain’s sentiment: “The two most important days in your life are the day you are born and the day you find out why.”
  • Uses the STAR method (describing successful experiences and defining talents) and visible thinking (drawing illustrations to “let the subconscious mind speak”) to help students find their “why”
  • Integrates the internet into her classroom: asking her students to research competitors, pricing from suppliers, and marketing techniques

“[I have them] connect with their essence (their talents and passions) and then dig deeper, turning pain into passion: purpose and value in society.”

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Holy Trinity High School
Evergreen Park, IL

  • Was previously an accountant for a national engineering firm
  • Incorporates Google Apps For Education from Day 1 of class
  • Requires students to create a prototype

“It is only when they can see it and share it that [they] are able to fully grasp the opportunity they are trying to capture. It is at this point that I see the light bulbs go on—it’s a great feeling.”

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Shanghai Charity Education Training Center
Shanghai, China

  • “Speaker teacher” for the NFTE program at Shanghai Charity Education Training Center, which has served 8,000+ students
  • Has ten years of experience teaching entrepreneurship
  • Invites NFTE alumni and local entrepreneurs into the classroom

“Helping a student is to help a family and lets me feel the value of this work.”

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Lincoln West High School
Euclid, OH

  • Invents learning games! Such as Entrepreneurship Jeopardy, Conversation Jenga, and I Declare Entrepreneurship Cards
  • Asks local entrepreneurs to speak about their failures and successes; takes students to teen pitch-tanks and innovation centers; uses YouTube clips to teach concepts and “motivational oration” from entrepreneurs
  • Teaches about products that were flops at first, but with hard-work, eventually became successful, like 409

“Now when one student is discouraged, I often hear them encourage each other by saying ‘be the 409’.”

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Oxon Hill High School
Bowie, MD

  • Has been a business owner; currently Executive Director at Mentoring Through Athletics as well as Teacher
  • Often shows students articles written about innovators to demonstrate how problems can be solved
  • Plays episodes of Shark Tank and The Profit to help supplement NFTE’s Economics of One Unit lesson, and invented the “Vending Machine” activity to help break down the concept
  • Utilizes Google Classroom

“If I had to choose one exceptional moment from my years teaching NFTE, it would be working with (recent NFTE alum) Carlton Baker. I am honored to work with students like him who contribute to my growth just as much as I contribute to theirs.”

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Academy of Information Technology and Engineering
Stamford, CT

  • Was Marketing Director in financial services
  • Is a patented inventor who once pitched her idea at a Shark Tank casting call
  • Shows her students how to use Google Surveys for primary research, Google Forms for collecting results, and LinkedIn for growing their networks
  • Has made the NFTE wholesale activity an online buying event

“Being able to introduce students to the business world is an amazing process. I see students turn from completely disinterested to, by the end of the year, being ready to run their own businesses, or even better, actually doing it and making a profit!”

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Roosevelt High School
Fresno, CA

  • Worked in business for 25 years
  • Has been teaching the NFTE curriculum for more than ten years
  • Spends countless hours and dollars outside of school helping her students launch businesses and draw up their plans
  • Provides other NFTE teachers with lesson plans and even visits their classes to help

After becoming a widow, Linda was unexpectedly thrown into poverty.  “I can truly relate to the importance of exposing young people to entrepreneurship. I was able to overcome and succeed, and I want that for them.”

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Berlin, Germany

  • Has been teaching the NFTE curriculum for more than ten years
  • Partners with many companies in her area to enhance her teaching and lesson plans
  • Keeps in touch with her students
  • Stresses to her students the importance of self-confidence, communication, teamwork, perseverance, and understanding of math/economics

“Through constant presentation of their results, and reflection on their strengths and weaknesses, as well as working with different media, they are given the [skills they need] for the final presentation and for a self-determined life.”

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LEAF Garda Youth Diversion Project
Letterkenny, Ireland

  • Teaches through the Garda Youth Diversion Project: a community based, multi-agency, youth crime prevention initiative which seeks to divert young people who have been involved in anti-social and/or criminal behavior
  • Quick to get her students on their feet and into the world, walking through town initiating discussions on the businesses they are passing
  • Successfully received local funding for laptops; now her students have access to computers, printers, photocopiers, camera, and laminators whenever they need them
  • Brings guest speakers into class as inspiration

“New hurdles appear each year that I had not thought of before, and I am challenged by the young people, which makes me more self-aware. We are learning together and that dynamic is lovely.”

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Amal Group
Nesher, Israel

  • Mentors other teachers, and has created “steering committees” of school personnel and business partners
  • Specializes in counseling special needs students
  • Works to integrate the NFTE curriculum in different types of classes

“The role of the committees is to develop a culture of involvement of the business sector in learning.” The teachers Shirie supports change lives daily.

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Florence Nightingale Middle School BET Magnet
Monterey Park, CA

  • Leads “business speed-dating:” an activity allowing students to interview potential business partners and record their findings on a graphic organizer
  • Asks students to design an online Entrepreneurial Mindset Persona infographic and revisit as the course proceeds
  • Welcomes alumni returning to her classroom as volunteers

Where before some students had been quiet and introverted, now they are leaders and role models for others.

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New Bedford High School
Greenville, RI

  • Graduated from the school where he currently teaches
  • Has been teaching the NFTE curriculum for nearly thirteen years
  • When demonstrating the cost of goods sold, brings in ingredients for a sandwich and constructs a meal in front of his class while listing the individual costs of each piece
  • Encourages internet research for market information, costs of goods, and startup costs

“Students want to create a business that has substance, and they become discouraged. So I have them research current problems in their community that need solving. Once they find meaning in their businesses, they become motivated to create their business plans.”

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Brooklyn High School of the Arts
Newark, NJ

  • Has nine years of experience teaching entrepreneurship
  • Has taught NFTE’s school-year and summer courses
  • Developed the Promotional Mix Tool Task, “infusing the world of social media with the business world to best utilize a platform students are already familiar with”

“As a youth I lacked educators that looked like me, could understand where I came from, and could use creativity to make the classroom relevant to me.” Joshua hopes to avoid this kind of experience for his students by being relatable and relevant.

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MacArthur High School
Irving, TX

  • Was co-owner of The Insurance Shoppe, Inc.
  • Has been teaching the NFTE curriculum for nearly thirteen years
  • Many of Dee Dee’s students become finalists in NFTE’s National Challenge

“This shows the creativity of this generation and their willingness to take risks in the development of their ideas,” Dee Dee remarks. “We continue to produce entrepreneurs who will make a huge difference in the world of tomorrow.”

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Murrell Dobbins Career and Technical High School
Hatboro, PA

  • Worked as a corporate Marketing Manager for ten years
  • Begins every school year by playing a game he calls “The Millionaire Game,” dispelling for his students many of the myths of wealth creation
  • Employs outside resources like Knowledge Matters to drive concepts home for his students

“I continually remind students that they are asking an investor to put their money on the line…their presentations are verbal resumes.”

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McCluer North High School
St. Louis, MO

Special congratulations to Jake, 2017 recipient of 
The John C. Whitehead Global Teacher of the Year Award.

  • Has taught problem solving, opportunity recognition, and marketing for more than ten years
  • Uses video to show examples of successful entrepreneurs; allows cell phone use in class for research purposes
  • Leads the DECA club and coaches the wrestling and volleyball teams at his school

“Advances in technology have changed education… students are more comfortable typing with their cell phones and… with the popularity of YouTube, SnapChat and Instagram, they often expect to see content in video format.

At my core, I just want every kid to have the opportunity to succeed at something and to see that there are many ways to be successful.”

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Westwood Secondary School
Singapore, Singapore

  • Created a game to help students learn empathy
  • Teaches design thinking
  • Uses current affairs as a trigger for learning

“It teaches them the concept of empathy… by putting them in the shoes of others so that they can better understand the type of challenges they face. They learn to have more patience and, at the same time, they begin to brainstorm ideas to help others with their daily lives.”

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John A. Ferguson Senior High School
Miami, FL

  • Has eleven years of experience in private industry
  • Initiated a BYOD (Bring Your Own Device) initiative to enhance learning and ensure that every student has access to a tablet or laptop
  • Developed a budgeting activity for her students where, based on a randomly picked wage, they must create a personal budget (including rent, utilities, food, clothes, etc.).

“One of my main goals is to prepare students to be successful in life.”

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North Charleston High School

Goose Creek, SC

  • Launches her NFTE school-year by showing new students achievements of previous students
  • Brings local entrepreneurs and business partners into the classroom on a weekly basis
  • Asks students to use digital cameras and photo editing software to complete many of their assignments

“I do not only see my students as who they are now, but as who they can and will become in the future… Because so many of my students come from a life of difficult circumstances, teaching entrepreneurship skills is the spark that ignites the fire in their eyes.”

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