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Cooper, Draper, and Tibbals Students Honored at Murphy Chamber Gala for Community Involvement


From left to right: Sienna Peek, Olive Jimenez, Mona Ibrahim, Arianna Peek, Aubriella Peek, Kinley Burch and Aaron Richards .

From left to right: Sienna Peek, Olive Jimenez, Mona Ibrahim, Arianna Peek, Aubriella Peek, Kinley Burch and Aaron Richards (from Plano ISD)

Wylie ISD students were guests of honor at the Murphy Chamber of Commerce Annual Gala in February.

Tibbals third-grader Sienna Peek, Draper fifth-grader Olive Jimenez, Cooper seventh-graders Aubriella Peek and Kinley Burch, and Draper sixth-graders Mona Ibrahim and Arianna Peek were recognized at the gala for their participation in the Chamber’s Summer Youthpreneur Academy.

"[The gala] was so cool -- we were like VIPs,” Olive said. “We had to dress up fancy with the theme that was Mardi Gras. When they called my name to go up, I was a little nervous but excited."

Mom and daughter pose for photo.

The Youthpreneur Academy is a summer camp hosted by the Murphy Chamber of Commerce that seeks to educate, mentor, and help future leaders launch their business ideas with the hope of helping them make innovative contributions to their communities.

Campers learn how to make a business plan to run a successful business. Jimenez has a business idea for pet sitting and walking -- Paws ‘n Claws.

"I learned from the camp that you have to be different from other businesses and creative,” Olive said. “I'm still working on my business plan for Paws 'n Claws."

Students’ camp projects typically include crafts such as sand art, bracelets or keychains.

“One year, we had a kid run an escape room out of tents,” Juli Richards, Murphy Chamber of Commerce executive director, said. “Another made cookies and cupcakes. We hired her to make custom cupcakes for our gala.” 

Chamber members and business owners mentor, collaborate with, and present throughout the day camp.

“We teach them how to build a business from the ground up,” Richards said. “From a business plan, to cost, to materials -- all wrapped in one. They leave having the basis of what they need to do.”

They also learn about giving back and philanthropic efforts at Youthpreneur Academy. 

“I believe that the program benefits students in identifying their strengths and leadership skills,” Richards said. “It gives them confidence in thinking outside of the box and how to take an idea to scale.”

Campers sell sand art.

At the camp, Jimenez created a business plan for sand art. After completing the camp, students are invited to run their businesses by selling their items at Murphy Maize Days. 

"It was really fun because we got to help with making the sand art for customers,” Olive said. “We got to see all the other booths from the other kids, too." 

Aubriella and Kinley built a business plan for A&K Boutique during Youthpreneur Academy, then sold bracelets, stickers and glasses at Murphy Maize Days.

“We were nervous that we didn’t make enough to sell,” Aubriella said, “but we ended up selling out of several items.”

They both plan to return to the camp next year.

“We will use the money we made by selling our items for the next camp,” Kinley said.

Campers work at Murphy Maize Days.

All registration fees from the Youthpreneur Academy go toward scholarships for a high school senior who lives in Murphy. Wylie ISD students who reside in Murphy are eligible for this scholarship.

The Murphy Chamber is currently enrolling for this summer’s Youthpreneur Academy. To learn more about the young entrepreneur program, click here.