A half dozen teenaged pseudo-entrepreneurs are putting their skills to the test in a provincewide competition on Monday.
Six Sahali Secondary Entrepreneurship 12 students used a fake product this year to hone their skills for the Junior Achievement Business Challenge in Vancouver.
The challenge pits individuals or groups against each other to determine who can produce, promote and sell the most successful product.
Participants can practice online with a simulation program that predicts markets in the year 2033.
Junior Achievement, the world’s largest not-for-profit organization dedicated to educating young people about business, assigns the products.
Sahali students were given the hologenerator, which teacher Ishar Litt describes as a device that mimics R2D2 relaying a recorded message in Star Wars.
The game is fun, but it also comes with plenty of teachable moments.
“The kids learn a lot because they have to look at the market,” said Litt. “For example if they look at the first quarter and we produced 500 units and we only sold 300, that means the second quarter we’re not going to produce as much. So we might have to lower our price or increase our research and development so we can come up with a better product.”
The Sahali students have already competed provincially online, which placed them in the middle of the pack.
On Monday, they go head-to-head with 21 other B.C. schools in Vancouver’s Coast Coal Harbour Hotel.
Some schools might have “an edge,” said Litt, since they’ve competed six years in a row.
But ever resourceful, Sahali students tracked down some intelligence from an experienced source in India.