Entrepreneurs in Training

Imagine you speak English at home and all your classes are in Spanish… Imagine your parents haven’t gone to college and might not have finished middle school… Imagine you have a class project where you learn everything about a business and have to present it at a university…

This was the case for the students of COBACH Plantel 212 El Pozo. These students are very impressive, not only are they all bilingual, they are learning to create businesses at their school and have great products. In many communities around Chiapas, families speak a language different to Spanish at home and in school have to learn Spanish since it’s Mexico official language. Many of our students’ parents have gone to middle school but haven’t had the opportunity to study beyond middle (sometimes elementary) school.

On Friday, a group of 16 students drove two hours  in the back of a pick-up truck from San Juan Cancuc to Ocosingo to present their projects in the hope of winning a grant to start their businesses. One group presented their project on setas, a local mushroom, another their coffee company, and the last group presented their handmade textiles. These kids shone through despite the tough questions from the judges and the language barrier! It was amazing seeing them think on their feet when they were asked something they weren’t sure how to answer and discuss between them what words meant.

Following their presentations, they wandered around the university, thinking they were dreaming. For many of these high schoolers, college is a dream; something that is in reach but doesn’t seem completely true. It was wonderful seeing these seniors get excited about the year ahead and learn more about the possibilities within their reach.

We love it when students are looking forward to the future and even though we focus on sending kids to high school, we LOVE IT when they look towards college. This year, our REACH 1.0 students are graduating from high school and we cannot wait to see what the future holds for them!

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