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Photo - Students at the High School Entrepreneurship Competition awards ceremony
Student entrepreneurs at the Baruch College &
Merrill Lynch IPO® Challenge award ceremony on June 20.

--Photo by Mario Morgado

New York, NY, June 21, 2007---The winners of the city-wide Baruch College & Merrill Lynch IPO® Challenge: A High School Entrepreneurship Competition were announced last night at a ceremony held at Baruch’s Zicklin School of Business. Eleven teams of high school students entered the competition and had to come up with an idea for a new business venture and then create a business plan that included strategies for financing, pricing, and marketing the product or service being sold.

John Elliott, dean of the Zicklin School, hosted several dozen high school students who participated in the event, along with their friends and families. Merrill Lynch executives served as judges in the competition and joined in the ceremony. Ruschell Boone, NY 1 News correspondent, performed MC duties for the evening.

Students from New Dorp High School took first place and the $2,000 prize. Jennifer Weiss, a junior, led the winning New Dorp team. The team came up with plans for Lane Entertainment, a multi-faceted family entertainment center with arcades, live theater, game rooms and party rooms. “We learned so much from the experience,” Miss Weiss said, “but the two main things were teamwork and dedication.” The other winning team members were which also included Elisa Ashour, Dana Chan, Melissa Price, Joe Riccio, Louisa Tush and Agnes Yawsen.

The second place team came from Manhattan’s Academy of Finance and Enterprise and won the $1,500 prize. They named their business Renivatios…Artios

Team leader Maoly Gomez led a group of five from Port Richmond High School to third place victory with U.N.O. (Unique Naturally Organic), an organic fast-food store located in Manhattan’s Financial District. The team chose the downtown site for their store front because Wall Streeters are always in a hurry, but are also sophisticated, health-conscious consumers. The third place finishers won $1,000.

The Baruch College & Merrill Lynch competition for 2007 began in February and involved a rigorous schedule of Saturday workshops and seminars that the students attended as they developed their entrepreneurial ideas. The students made their final presentations before a panel of Merrill Lynch executives on Thursday, June 7, but winners were kept secret until last night. Merrill Lynch executives Eddy Bayardelle, managing director of global philanthropy; Olya Naumova, assistant vice president and chief financial officer; and Larry Sharpe, director of global philanthropy, attended the event, along with Kevin Albert, retired Merrill Lynch managing director, and Baruch faculty and staff.

Contact: Zane Berzins

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