Dressed for Success

According to 2021 entrepreneurship statistics, there are over 582 million entrepreneurs in the world. Another interesting, and possibly concerning, statistic for young entrepreneurs is that 22.5% of small businesses fail within the first year. The number one reason why businesses fail - there is no market need. Thankfully for two enterprising Viz seniors, Martha Seaton and Kate Hanlon who are part of the Ellen Thomasson Malecek Entrepreneurial Leadership Program (ETMELP), market need is not an issue for their business venture, Here Comes the Graduate.
During a recent sit down with these two budding business owners, Martha and Kate provided some background on the Here Comes the Graduate program, why they felt so strongly about taking on this endeavor, and how the Viz community can support the upcoming summer sale. Click here to view the interview.
 
The Back Story
Here Comes the Graduate, formerly the White Dress Sale, was previously run by the Visitation Academy Mothers’ Club. In 2020, the Mothers’ Club reached out to former Assistant Upper School Principal Katie Wilson to see if any girls would be willing to help them prepare and hold the sale. It was Katie’s idea to have students in the entrepreneurial program take it over. An offer was made to the Mothers’ Club early in the fall of 2021, and they generously agreed to let the entrepreneurs take ownership.
 
In addition to giving the business a new name, Martha and Kate have done absolutely everything to prepare for the upcoming Here Comes the Graduate sale from inventory management to solicitation for donations and consignments to social media promotion to selecting the sale dates and reserving the necessary equipment and rooms to hold the sale to communicating their business plans to administration and keeping the Mothers’ Club liaison well informed.
 
About the ETMELP
As a memorial to Ellen Thomasson Malecek, Visitation Academy Class of 1989, her classmates, family, and friends dedicated the creation of the Ellen Thomasson Malecek Entrepreneurial Leadership Program to continue Ellen’s entrepreneurial work. The ETMELP is designed to foster and promote the skills needed for students to develop and execute their own ideas in today’s world.
 
Mrs. Sue Andrews, Instructional Technology, took over as head of the program in 2019. Exciting changes have included the creation of two separate classes: entrepreneurship and entrepreneurial leadership. Having two courses allows Viz students to grow their initiatives over the course of two years, developing innovative programs like Crescent Coffee and Peace in Wellness, that will thrive at Visitation and in the community in future years.
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