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Wednesday, July 29, 2015 - OU camp stirs high school students' passion for business

When learning about business is made fun and interactive for high schoolers, it plants passion in the minds of the future generation of business leaders during a critical period of their development.

One of the camp highlights was a field trip to Krispy Kreme to learn about their company business model and see real life examples of supply chain management.
OU’s business summer camp, Explore the World of Business, gave this opportunity free-of-charge to 25 high schoolers from Pontiac, Avondale, and Rochester schools in July.

Over the course of five days, students spent mornings and afternoons learning about different business disciplines, including accounting, economics, marketing, operations, management Information systems, human resources, and finance. 

The group was led by experienced Oakland University business professors and faculty, who taught the students about the basic and not-so-basic components of a career in business.

“Our whole purpose was to expose these students to the business world and to what it takes to be a good businessperson,” said School of Business Administration lecturer Frank Cardimen, who guided the students through the bulk of the camp’s activities. “I think it had an impact on them, and over the long haul they’ll look back on this experience as one that was pretty neat.”

Each day students participated in interactive learning activities, which included games and presentations by OU and local business leaders.

“All the speakers we got to listen to were really inspirational,” said Adams High School student Jose Leonard. “You could tell they were passionate about what they were doing.”

Field trips were another part of the fun. Students visited local businesses, including Fiat Chrysler Automobiles (FCA), where they met with top leadership executives and received an exclusive tour of the aero-acoustic wind tunnel.

During another trip, students were able to admire the architecture and design of Meadow Brook Hall, a historical landmark estate built by Matilda Dodge Wilson, co-founder of Oakland University.

Also on the schedule was a sweet and educational visit to Krispy Kreme, where the group enjoyed glazed treats and learned about supply chain management.

Adams High School student Christopher Streng talked about how the camp changed his perspective on business. “Before camp I wasn’t 100 percent sure I wanted to go into business,” said Streng, “and if I did, I wasn’t really sure what I wanted to do. But now I know more about the different fields and I want to be a leader like these people are. I’m not just in it for the money, I want to enjoy my work like the speakers we heard obviously did.”

The business camp, led by OU lecturer Frank Cardimen (left), was a great success in 2015.

Story and photos by Rachel Oakley