YBA hosts area participants Youth Business Adventure (YBA) recently completed its 26th annual sessions, hosting 243 high school seniors, educators and business executives from across the state during two week-long sessions. The first session was held at Black Hills State University in Spearfish while the second session was held at the University of South Dakota in Vermillion. Local participants included Randy Kabambi and Meagan O'Connor from Vermillion High School.
Volunteer business executives Beth Adamson, SD Family Business Association; Kenyon Gleason, USD Media Relations; Kevin Haselhorst, First Dakota National Bank; and Darwin Van Den Oever, CorTrust Bank, served as business mentors for the USD session. Pat Wingen of AaLadin Industries, Inc. in Elk Point is chair of the YBA Advisory Board and served as campus chair for the USD session.
During the week, the students and educators gained vital information about the business world from those who work and live in that world, the business executives or "company advisors." Both educators and students also had the opportunity to gain college credits for participation in the YBA sessions.
Since its inception in 1980, YBA has been sponsored by the South Dakota Chamber of Commerce & Industry, a statewide business organization located in Pierre. The program is completely funded through contributions from generous South Dakota business, corporate, and individual sponsors.
In addition to speakers on many aspects of the business world, a tour of an area business, and a management simulation, the week included competition in a Business Quiz Bowl, production of one minute TV commercials, participation in a problem-solving activity, and presenta-tions of business plans made by the individual companies before a panel of judges. Students also were entertained with evening activities of bowling, swimming, a dance, and attendance at a performance by the Dakota Baroque and Classical Company, a musical ensemble at the National Music Museum in Vermillion.
Preparations are currently underway for the 27th annual sessions of the Youth Business Adventure program in June, 2006. Sessions will be held June 11-16 at Black Hills State University in Spearfish and June 25-30 at Mount Marty College in Yankton. The daily newsletters from both 2005 campuses and closing slide shows can be found on the YBA Web site www.yba-sd.org, along with more information about the YBA program. For further information about Youth Business Adventure, contact the local participants, or call the YBA office at 1-800-742-8112.