Behind every successful entrepreneur is a smorgasbord of obstacles and failures before they made it. It’s a path filled with highs and lows — with the right mindset and drive, however, anyone can create products and services that enhance our standard of living.
Young adults aspiring to be tomorrow’s moguls do not have to wait until they’re old enough for business school. The decisiveness, focus and motivation needed to achieve greatness can be learned on the 340 beautiful acres that make up New Hampton School — a private, college preparatory school for boarding and day students in grades nine to 12 and postgraduate.
An illustrious history makes the School an ideal destination for such development. Its founder, John K. Simpson made a name for himself with a booming import business in Boston. The endeavour helped him raise US$10,000 — worth a lot more then — to launch an institution capable of helping future generations write similar success stories.
Today, the School continues to grow in his honour, staying true to its commitment, strategic vision and pedagogy designed to foster innovative thinking. Modules are updated regularly and to complement them, new and enriching offerings are introduced — like the brand new Entrepreneurial Studies programme.
It was developed to cultivate an entrepreneurial spirit in learners and help them identify gaps and identify opportunities in today’s ever-changing employment landscape. With the World Economic Forum’s Future of Jobs survey predicting nearly half of today’s work activities could be automated by 2055, there’s a lot to gear up for.
To ensure every pupil takes their next academic step or first professional leap with confidence, this programme provides them endless opportunities to take risks in real-world business start-ups, find their confidence through independent modules and gain industry exposure through internships.
It ensures the key competencies of creative problem solving, collaboration and critical thinking are the foundation of every syllabus — from chemistry to creative writing. Students are also expected to relish elective courses in building startups, multimedia journalism, “fixpert” workshops, a class in the fundamentals of human-centred design, and much more — all of which gets them accustomed to contemporary technologies and the ins and outs of building a lucrative business.
“I think this is a great programme because as an entrepreneur, you have to think outside the box,” says Bill Goldberg ’73. “Most people are afraid. They are afraid to make decisions. Remember if you don’t make a decision, ultimately the decision will be made for you. And most of the time it won’t be what you wanted. So, jump!”
Many already are. For instance, current senior Jonathan Ficarra spent his first semester in an internship with an alum of the School who owns a thriving real estate company in Boston. The opportunities entailed learning about the real estate industry while receiving course credit through applicable projects.
Meanwhile, current sophomore Ava Millerick decided there was no need to learn from a company when she could just form her own and gain knowledge from the process. She innovated Sustineri, which promotes used clothing sales and trades on school campuses to reduce the environmental impact of the fashion industry.
Both are primed to follow in the footsteps of New Hampton School’s expansive lineup of thriving, business-savvy graduates — one of whom is Meredith Gardner ‘98, who founded The Grove Apparel, Home and Gifts, a lifestyle boutique in Winter Park, Florida. The one-stop shop first opened its doors in 2014 and today shows no signs of slowing down.
“My teachers at New Hampton School shaped my thinking,” she says. “I got to meet a lot of different people from a lot of different places. Now, I’ve got a store with dogs, kids, and families, and everybody in our small town is involved. So, I think you can see some of those values instilled in me from New Hampton School in The Grove.”
Tem Nugmanov ‘15 reminisces his New Hampton School experience as the “powerful catalyst” that pushed him forward at “enormous speeds.” Upon graduating, he achieved acceptance to New York University — where he arrived ready to leverage every start-up resource available to him and start strategising his first company. Today, Nugmanov is the founder and CEO of Optemization, a digital operations agency.
Marcel Johnson has a success story for the books as well. During his time at the School, he learned every opportunity should be seen as one to learn from. “I think of my time as a collection of experiences that helped build a diverse skill set that has contributed to my ability to be entrepreneurial,” he says.
Today, Johnson is the CEO of Diall, a mobile application designed to help users improve their mental health and well-being through a sense of community, proactive learning from evidence-based resources, and quicker access to specialised crisis support.
To write a success story of your own while preparing for a world of rapid change, click here to learn more about New Hampton School.