The fourth annual Youth Entrepreneurship Competition held on March 11 saw 17 students present their business concepts. The competition was hosted by the Dodge City/Ford County Development Corporation at Dodge City Community College and is part of the YEC series by Network Kansas.


The goal of the competition is to help students immerse themselves into the world of entrepreneurial business practices.


Students gave a four-minute presentation in front of a panel of local judges, who scored them based on the presentation as well as accompanying executive summary.


First place and $1,500 went to Lauren Seachris and her business, Lauren’s Treats.


Seachris owns and runs this business outside of the competition, selling pet treats and toys online and is frequent at regional trade shows.


Camilla Gonzales won second place and $1,000 for her business, Garage Lodge, an idea from her youth in which garage-style rest stops would be available to travelers at interstate exits, with the mission statement, “Garage Lodge ensures sleep to all people on the move because your rest is our only quest.”


Ty Vilaysing and his mobile auto detailing business, Ace Detailing, took third place and $500. Ace Detailing is a concept that provides on-location services wherever the customer is.


“All the students did an excellent job presenting their business ideas,” said Mollea Wainscott, special projects coordinator for the Dodge City/Ford County Development Corporation. “It is really amazing to see our youth think like entrepreneurs, they put a lot of time and work into their business plans.”


SMH Consulting and Christopher Boys American Family Insurance sponsored the event, along with other members of the community who also volunteered as judges for the competition and mentors for the students.


Winners were scheduled to compete at Kansas State University on April 28 for the state competition, but the event was canceled because of the COVID-19 outbreak.


For more information, contact Wainscott at 620-371-3869 or housing@dodgedev.org.


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