As part of One Summer Chicago 2015, Capsim teamed up with DePaul University, the Chicago Housing Authority, and BMO Harris Bank to help teach soon to be high school seniors about financial literacy and leadership.
Over six weeks, our own Victoria Vasquez and Anthony Illuzzi, taught a class of 21 students using our Foundation simulation. They really connected with the students and it was apparent in the proud looks on their faces as they watched the final presentations.
Victoria was excited to see how students embraced the simulation once it caught their interest. We asked her about the experience.
“On the first day of class the students were ambivalent about the class. We quickly realized we needed to connect business knowledge with their life goals. We got students to talk about what they wanted to do. They wanted to be pastry chefs, lawyers, and engineers. It was easy to connect those careers with business. Once we showed them the connection they really got excited, and competitive about the simulation. In their final presentation it was great to see students who weren’t excited about business before get excited about it and be really proud of what they had accomplished.”
Anthony was impressed with how much the students learned in a short time. In the beginning most students had not been exposed to any formal business instruction. Anthony said
“It was really rewarding to see their metamorphosis. Starting out they weren’t that interested in the class and they didn’t know much about business or even the terminology. As we went through the six weeks I would see them discussing forecasting, arguing about contribution margin and interpreting perceptual maps. It felt like we opened new doors for them. Just so they could explore business and see if they found it appealing. During the final presentations I was amazed at the amount of knowledge these students had absorbed and shared.”
The Graduation and Awards Ceremony included student presentations that were based on their experience with our Foundation simulation. With mentors, professors, parents and siblings looking on these students illustrated why they were deserving of this opportunity. Everyone at Capsim thought this was a great experience and are already thinking about how we can be involved next year.