VGCC Holds Entrepreneurship Camp for Middle School Students


Vance-Granville Community College held an innovative Entrepreneurship Youth Camp, called “Be a ‘Trep” (short for “enTREPreneur”), from June 14-18. The participants were 17 local middle school students who are aspiring entrepreneurs.

The camp focused on entrepreneurial creativity, leadership, and innovation. Campers acquired business and marketing knowledge and strengthened their competencies as they continue to embark on their entrepreneurial journeys.

Among the many highlights was the opportunity for the students to meet a real, local entrepreneur. Jason Shearin, owner of Lake Gaston Coffee Company, discussed the coffee business and fielded insightful questions from the campers.

Members of the business community supported the entrepreneurship camp as sponsors, including the Rotary Club of Henderson, Union Bank, Gupton Services, George Watkins, Youngsville Academy, Englebright Welding, LLC, and Precision Automotive Repair.

The lead instructor for the camp was Tonya Snider, the CEO of tenBiz. The assistant instructor was Coach Toriano “TJ” McRae, Jr. of Warren County Schools.

“It’s pretty powerful to see a community come behind a youth entrepreneurship program like this,” said Snider. “From the college and community support, to the buy-in and participation from the parents and kids, it’s been such a great experience! I can’t wait to see what these kids do next, now that they have been introduced to limitless possibilities.”

One parent remarked to VGCC officials: “I had to really force my son to come to camp Monday morning, [but] when I picked him up Monday evening, he said, ‘Mom, that was fun! I’m definitely going back!’ Thank you so much for the work you all have done with these kids this week. It has been amazing.”

For more information on this and other entrepreneurship programs, contact VGCC Small Business Center Director Sheri Jones at

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