Summer Stars: Camp Brings Business-Minded Students to Campus

The members of LAB Camp's 2018 class pose with their instructors inside the DeVos Graduate School building.

The members of LAB Camp's 2018 class pose with their instructors inside the DeVos Graduate School building.

Chloe Allen is the kind of student that’s attracted to the Northwood Idea.

She’s bright, hardworking, has a nose for business, and succeeds in a variety of competitive environments. 

Allen was one of 34 high school students who attended the Learn About Business (LAB) Camp for a week this summer on Northwood’s Midland campus. For five exhausting days, the students immerse themselves in the world of entrepreneurism, learning from Northwood professors and outside experts about a variety of business principles. 

To aid in their understanding, student teams develop a plan for a new business, applying what they are taught along the way. On the final day of the camp, each team presents its plan to a panel of judges, who select a winner.

Allen will be a senior this fall at Oxford High School, northwest of Detroit, and Northwood is on her short list of potential colleges.

“I really want to go into business, to study finance and marketing,” Allen said. “So coming here for a week and seeing the campus was outstanding. And the camp gave me an exposure to entrepreneurism that I hadn’t had before.”

That type of contact with potential enrollees is one of many benefits of hosting LAB Camp, said John Gustincic, the Northwood professor who organizes the program.

“It’s impressive to see the dedication of these students to what they are doing,” said Colleen Webb, president of the Michigan Business Education Association and one of the judges of LAB Camp projects. “The questions they pose are very, very good.”

“They are on campus for five days. They stay in the dorms. They experience college,” Gustincic said. “Over the course of the week, the kids become more confident, and feel more comfortable working with others. It’s also very interesting because we have kids from many different backgrounds.”
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Students who take part in LAB Camp at Northwood have their work critiqued by business education experts, receive valuable insight from professionals, and compete for awards.