Today is Giving Tuesday, a national event to support non-profit organizations like ours.

Many of America’s young people have had little or no exposure to free enterprise beyond buying things.  High school students seldom know the real stories of entrepreneurs, their families, and the purpose they serve in society. Our schools often do not teach them how organizations live and breathe, overcome obstacles, and survive or prosper. Yet, in even the smallest of communities, there are businesses at work, large and small, providing both interesting jobs and rewarding careers to one’s neighbors.

In these times of debate over the merits (and challenges) of the free enterprise system, the more that youth know about business and how it works, the better.

Toward that end, two weeks ago, we announced that the American Business History Center will sponsor a high school student essay contest in the Spring of 2021. We will offer cash prizes to students across America for the best short essay on the history of a local business, from a corner restaurant to John Deere. We hope to reach thousands of students when we launch the contest. Writing the essays will require a visit to the company and conversations with the people who work there.

If you enjoy reading our newsletters, please consider joining other readers in supporting this program. We think it will help many students better understand how businesses are built and how the free enterprise system works. Hopefully many will be motivated to become entrepreneurs and business leaders themselves.

This will be the first in an annual program. As we build it up over time, we expect to impact the lives of many young people. You can help us get off to a great start!

Since our announcement two weeks ago, our readers have contributed just over $7,000! This is most gratifying and will enable us to offer a first prize of at least $2,000 and additional ”runner-up” prizes totaling more $3,000.

Our goal in this campaign is to raise at least $10,000, so we are not quite there yet. Every dollar counts.  A contribution of $25 or $100 will help us achieve our goal!


Stay tuned for another exciting story from the annals of business history in our newsletter later this week.
Thanks in advance for your support,
Gary Hoover
Executive Director
American Business History Center

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