SPASH Students Learn the Business of Giving Back

For the Metro Wire

Students in Trevor Knight’s Introduction to Business class are putting their newly-learned skills to good use this holiday season by raising funds for local charitable organizations.

Student groups were allowed to select the charitable organization of their choice, and then got to work selling ornaments and brainstorming other ways to raise funds, using social media tools, direct sales to peers, family, and online commerce websites, like eBay.

“We live in a very generous community and these students will be responsible for carrying on that tradition,” said Knight, SPASH business teacher. “This assignment gives groups the opportunity to apply components of working in the business world we covered in class into a real environment for real organizations”.

Students work through team development skills, a SWOT (strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats) analysis of their project, identification of their target market and marketing plans.

“It just feels good to give back,” said Jodie Piece, a junior, whose group is raising funds for the Boys and Girls Club of Portage County.

Another group, the SPASH Stocking Stuffers, selected the Portage Co. Humane Society, and focused their marketing messages on statistics from the local shelter after realizing several students in the group had adopted pets from the shelter.

“We wanted to appeal to how people feel about their pets and animals in general,” said sophomore Erin Jore. “I don’t think many people know how many animals are in the shelter each year, we wanted to support keeping them healthy and helping them to be adopted.”

Students also said they learned to roll with unforeseen hiccups along the way, noting their original order was for red ornaments with a black logo. When that order arrived, the logo had been printed in white.

“We ended up liking the white logo better, sometimes mistakes turn out to be positive in the end,” said junior Emily Johnston.

For more information on the fundraiser, or to donate, contact Knight at [email protected]

The fundraiser runs through Dec. 22.