Pennsylvania teachers and counselors recommend the candidates who are then reviewed by the PFEW staff. Admission is based on motivation to learn that is demonstrated through essays submitted by the applicants. Those accepted are awarded scholarships, which cover all program costs, excluding a nominal registration fee and transportation to and from Williamsport.
When students arrive for their one-week session in July or August, they are housed on the campus in dormitories where they experience a taste of college life. During the week, students form companies that compete against other student companies for the equivalent of three years using a college level simulation. Business volunteers serve as Company Advisors who mentor the students as they face many of the same decisions real executives confront every day.
The companies compete against each other in the areas of management skill, return on net assets, a marketing and advertising campaign, and a presentation to stockholders.
Company Advisors do not make decisions for their team, but suggest available options and share their own experiences and challenges. Scholarship winners learn the value of teamwork, communication, cooperation, and leadership.
Totally funded, taught, and staffed by the Pennsylvania business community, PFEW is supported by eight manufacturer’s associations, more than 100 chambers of commerce, and more than 800 companies. Now in its 39th year of operation, PFEW’s governing body is the Foundation for Free Enterprise Education, a 501(c)3 non-profit organization.
For more information, contact the Foundation at 1-814-833-9576 or visit www.pfew.org.
PHOTO CAP: Megan Smith