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Young Entrepreneurs Camp teaches kids practical skills for the future

Young Entrepreneurs facilitator Kathryn Peterson, 17, helps Aliyah Leichter, 10, balance her business and personal expenses during the Young Entrepreneurs Summer Camp held in the UND Center for Innovation June 5, 2014. "We get to transfer money and then count it," Aliyah said. "We still have kid abilities but we get to do adult things." (Luke Franke/Grand Forks Herald)1 / 5
Barry Striegel, director of the Young Entrepreneurship Education Program, turns a students mistake into a beneficial teaching moment for the class. "It's important for the kids to know they can make things happen," Barry said. "I want them to be independent." (Luke Franke/Grand Forks Herald)2 / 5
Kids are required to balance and check their business and personal finances on a daily basis. Making sure everything is in order before the new business day can begin. (Luke Franke/Grand Forks Herald)3 / 5
Imaginary currency, called a "cotone" sits among balance sheets and candy during the Young Entrepreneurs Camp. (Luke Franke/Grand Forks Herald)4 / 5
A child reads paperwork during the Young Entrepreneurs Summer Camp held in the UND Center for Innovation June 5, 2014. (Luke Franke/Grand Forks Herald)5 / 5

All this week, children ages 9 to 13 at the Young Entrepreneurs Summer Camp at UND’s Center for Innovation are forming their own society and running their own businesses.

“It’s important for the kids to know that they can make things happen,” said program director Barry Striegel. “I want them to become independent.”

The campers are creating their own currency, electing their own leaders and starting their own businesses, in the process learning skills such as economics, personal finance, leadership and citizenship.

“We let them know how they can practically use the skills they’ve learned in school to benefit them in the real world,” Striegel said. “They need to know they can do this on their own.”

The camp ends today.

For more info on other dates and locations for the camp, go to