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Shelby County CEO program seeks more business support

The Shelby County CEO prgram, which trains high school students to be future business leaders, needs support from more of today's business leaders, organizers say.

Though start-up money for the entrepreneurial high school class was raised in October, a source of income for the facilitator's salary has not yet been established. Just over 10 businesses have committed so far to a three-year pledge of $1,000, but organizers would like to see about 40 do so by Jan. 31.

"We're going to make it happen," said Anna Kiley, Shelby County's economic development director. "CEO has been so well-received, we're not really worried about it."

Kiley said that businesses should consider pledging money because doing so would help a class that teaches the county's young people business skills. Therefore, she said, those businesses would have access to a better workforce.

In addition to more pledges, Kiley said Shelby County CEO could use more volunteer speakers, hosts, and mentors. The class takes students to local businesses so they can see how they're run.

Meanwhile, the deadline for students to apply for the first year of Shelby County CEO is Feb 1. So far, student-interest has been promising, Kiley said.

"I'm very satisfied with the response from students," she said. "Especially since this is the first year, when there's not word-of-mouth from those who have actually experienced the class. Interest is going to grow once the program actually starts."

On Wednesday, Shelby County high school students will take a field trip to observe an Effingham County CEO class. That trip is booked with students — another sign that interest is high.

Kiley said that anyone who would like to learn more about Shelby County CEO and how to help can visit its website at

Soruce: Shelbyville daily union
By: Stan Polanski 

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