As a first year JA Business Week student with virtually no previous business experience, I was pleasantly surprised when I was moved to the Track 2 project working with Smoke Barbecue food truck. I had no idea what I was in for and clearly remember one of my company members on the first day asking, “So what IS Business Week?” I was stumped and could not properly answer her question. Luckily, my CA Jenn Marshall provided a comprehensive look at what our week at Johnson & Wales University would entail and even had begun researching the ideas we would need to succeed.
During our first meeting as a company Jenn led us in a vote for the CEO of Company N. I entered myself into the running feeling confident about my leadership abilities, although I did not expect such overwhelming support from the group of ten that I had met only hours before. Every question imaginable came up as I attempted to learn more about business, along with aiding my team in any way possible.
My favorite parts of the week were those when the team would have “aha” moments during a workshop or information session and go running back to our team’s room, full of excitement. That excitement is what allowed our team to become so close and work well together within one short week.
Ultimately, the hard work Company N put in and the risks we took were exactly what allowed us to succeed. And when I was standing in front of a couple hundred people thanking my company for their tireless work, I knew exactly what JA Business Week is all about. Business Week is about taking the opportunities you have and dedicating yourself, no matter your experience, to learning and growing, which is exactly what I — and two hundred other students — had the great privilege of doing this summer.