Entrepreneurial Summer Camps: A Great Way to Spend The Summer
Enrich your daughter’s summer with hands-on, real-world, fun entrepreneurial workshops
If your daughter loves Shark Tank, these summer camps might be right up her alley.
Just like the show, entrepreneurial summer camps focus on teaching kids business skills and include seasoned entrepreneurs who act as mentors. Many programs also culminate in pitch competitions. Not a lot of schools offer entrepreneurship as a core subject or after-school club. Summer camps allow kids to learn the ropes from actual entrepreneurs and see what it’s like to start a business. Best of all, they strengthen their entrepreneurial mindset. And kids also learn how to bounce back from rejection with grace and develop critical life skills while working with peers.
In short, an entrepreneurial summer camp is another excellent way to set your daughter up for success. Here are just some of the summer camps across the nation that specialize in entrepreneurship.
Recommended for ages 11-15; 2 locations in Northern California
Camp BizSmart makes it easy for Bay Area kids to experience an entrepreneurial summer camp like no other. For 10 days in June and July, in two different locations (San Mateo and Santa Clara), kids work in teams to complete a business plan challenge designed by the leaders of successful startups. BizSmart campers are mentored by industry experts and taught how to present their business ideas to venture capitalists and angel investors. The best team from all sites is invited to the annual Angel Capital Expo and recognized for their winning business plan.
Full tuition for SVCF’s San Mateo HQ costs $1,495 while full tuition with housing in Santa Clara University cost $4,437.50. Camp BizSmart offers scholarships that will cover 50-100% of the tuition, but room and board are still each camper’s responsibility.
Recommended for girls ages 6-12; 6 locations in California, 1 in New York state, and 1 in Washington D.C.
For one week, BizzyGirls campers are taught how to create and market a product line in the industry of their choice. Camp curriculum includes branding, advertising, e-commerce, sales, marketing, and even cost accounting.
At some sites, women business owners share their advice while they watch the campers pitch their products. At the end of the seven-day program, every camper sells their wares in a pop-up store where they can engage with customers. They’ll even have a chance to open their own online shop at BizzyGirls’ e-commerce site.
Tuition depends on location, and most sites offer discounts for siblings, multi-camp registrants, and returning students.
Recommended for ages 8-17; 1 location
The Start-up Kids Club’s Entrepreneur + 3D Printing Camp challenges Austin-based campers to think outside the box. The box, in this case, is a 3D printer, and the campers are encouraged to use its wide range of applications to create an original business or enhance existing ones. Campers will also acquire 3D design skills and take a deep dive into product innovation through collaboration and critical thinking.
Tuition is free!
Recommended for ages 9-14; 1 location in Wisconsin
Located in Madison, Wisconsin, the E-seedling Youth Entrepreneur Camp is a short but focused camp that provides hands-on training for campers who want to learn how to run a startup. For three days in July, campers learn how to create a business model, present an idea, understand sales and marketing, and participate in a (friendly) competition to raise money for the scholarship fund.
Tuition costs $169 with an Early Bird price savings of $30.
Recommended for ages 5-17; 3 Mid-Atlantic locations
Active SPARK Business Academy Inc. offers all sorts of entrepreneurial summer camps in three different states: Maryland, Virginia, and New York. For the youngest campers (ages 5-9), My First Lemonade Stand camp’s a great starting point. They become “lemonade entrepreneurs” and set up a lemonade stand on the last day of camp to raise money for charity. The Budding Entrepreneurs camp engages campers as young as 7 years old and teaches them how to make pitch presentations. The Future Millionaires Bootcamp empowers campers from two age groups, 10-13 and 14-17, to gain business-savvy skills in personal finance, investments, entrepreneurship, leadership, and innovation.
Tuition ranges between $225 and $795 depending on the location. Discounts are available for siblings.
Recommended for girls ages 6-16; 7 locations in Virginia, 3 in Maryland, and 1 in Texas
SheEO Academy has three camp options that focus on girl empowerment, goal setting, and financial literacy. The Girl Boss camp provides campers between 6 and 12 years old a unique opportunity to know what it’s like to own a business at a young age. The Girl Entrepreneur camp teaches campers how to manage their business finances with confidence. The Business Girl camp prepares campers between 13 and 16 years old for future leadership roles, either as an entrepreneur or CEO of a large corporation.
Tuition starts at $315 per person.
Recommended for girls ages 10-15; 15+ locations across the United States
Alexa Cafe blends STEM, entrepreneurship, and social impact in a vibrant college-like setting. Campers are encouraged to explore their interests in tech and find opportunities to turn their big ideas into realities. They collaborate in teams and finish projects with the help of mentors from tech companies and universities such as Carnegie Mellon University, Stanford, Caltech, and New York University.
Tuition ranges between $579 and $949 per week depending on the add-ons (food and accommodation) and location.
More camps are launching each year, so keep an eye out for one near you. We hope this list inspires you and your daughter to find a camp that piques her curiosity, sparks her interest, and nurtures her entrepreneurial mindset. She’s never too young to start her own business!