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Kiwanis Hears from White County CEO Facilitator

Story/Recap courtesy of Kiwanis member Kati Sturgal

Kiwanis had a very special guest this last Thursday at their weekly Kiwanis meeting. Carmi native, Tracy Orr, is stepping into new territory, leading White Countys new CEO Program for highschool senior students. CEO stands for Creating Entrepreneurial Oppurtunies. The program began in Effiingham, IL. Tracy believes that CEO caters to small towns to help students get equipped in networking with other business leaders in their towns and to have vision for future business oppurtunites.

The program will begin August 16th 2016 and will count as a class elective, earning a credit just as any other highschool course would give. Students who desire to be apart of CEO have been anonimously chosen thru an application process. Unlike normal classes in school this one will always be hosted outside the class room which makes it something new and different for the kids. Their first meeting will be held at Elastec in Carmi IL. Hosting locations will change throughout the year to give the students a greater environment on business culture. Local business owners will come in and speak to the students on how they chose their start and topics they think are important to teach the students.

The students will be touring local businesses as well to learn the ins and outs of how they are ran and learn more knowledge regarding different fields. The classes focus will be to helping students understand the importance of proffessionalism, responsibility, and honor in the work force. They will be required to dress for the class as business proffesionals as well as beginning at 7:30am verses your normal 1st hour period. At the first of the year the students will create a buisness idea as a class, where they will be working together and making a profit that can be later used to launch each of their own businesses. By the end the year the goal is for them each to have their own business that they can continue to develop. A trade show will be held ending the school year where all will be invited to see what they have created.

Two students from the White County class will be chosen from there to go on to the National Trade Show in Effingham IL. Past students have had ideas such as making Jewlery, magazines, homemade soaps, handy man services, and even drones to help farmers. Their ideas truly can be anything! Tracys vision is to see the older generation with the newer generation using their talents together to create and grow us even more as a community, pushing us together as a whole so that our kids may have the desire to return home after college and expand business in our region. If you would like more information for White Countys CEO program please visit, facebook, or twitter.