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LeanGap Summer Entrepreneurship Program

LeanGap is an intensive 6-week summer program that empowers high school students to build their own startups. LeanGap helps students develop their ideas from concept to successful launch. The LeanGap curriculum moves fast—fostering essential entrepreneurial traits—hacking, hustling, and designing. The team believes in young people, their ideas and capabilities.

High school students from all over the U.S. and countries like Japan, India, and Saudi Arabia are attending. This is an opportunity for future young female entrepreneurs to learn from some of the best business minds with companies such as Microsoft and Indiegogo. Professors from top schools like Babson College, Harvard University, MIT and Rhode Island School of Design will contribute their entrepreneur expertise.

There will be social enterprise-focused curriculum for students interested in becoming change makers for their communities and on globally.

Merit and need-based scholarships are available. As an exercise in entrepreneurship, the LeanGap team will help interested applicants launch crowd-funding campaigns to fund their tuition.

To learn more about the curriculum and team as well as submit an application go to https://leangap.com/.

Right now 25% of the enrollment is young women. Isn’t time for enrollment to be 50% female? Why not help make it happen?

Application deadline is April 1 2015.

December 7, 2014

Christmas and Hanukkah are right around the corner. Have you thought about what you would like to help make your business or future business a success? Here are a few ideas to give your family, friends, and all the other people who support you as a young entrepreneur.

For aspiring or emerging young female entrepreneurs 

Carol Topp CPA founder of Micro Business for Teens and host of the Dollars and Sense Show podcast has some creative gift ideas:

  • White board and dry erase markers for brainstorming your ideas
  • Books written by Carol on the blog Micro Businesses for Teens:http://microbusinessforteens.com/products/
    1. Starting a Micro Business
    2. Running a Micro Business
    3. Money and Taxes in a Micro Business
    4. Micro Business for Teens Workbook
    5. Carol’s book Teens and Taxes: http://teensandtaxes.com
  • Consultation with an accountant. To get started set up a session with Carol. You can contact Carol through her business website Carol Topp CPA http://caroltoppcpa.com/contact-us/

For young female entrepreneurs already in business 

Check out more of Carol’s gift ideas on the Micro Business for Teens website (http://microbusinessforteens.com/blog-2/).

We would like to suggest:

  • Subscriptions to Inc. and Entrepreneur magazines
  • A subscription to Evernote https://evernote.com
  • A motivational poster or framed desktop print from Successories http://www.successories.com
  • Hire a professional headshot photographer. One or two headshots are good to have ready when journalists and editors want to write a story on young entrepreneurs.
  • Two well-written bios prepared by a writer who knows how to highlight young entrepreneurs


Marketing gifts for emerging entrepreneurs and those already in business 

Carol suggestions include:

  • Logo design
  • Business cards, banners, brochures, posters, postcards, etc. VistaPrint.com is Carol’s favorite.
  • Website hosting and domain name

To expand on Carol’s list we would like to include:

  • Business card holders
  • Office supplies of all types from post it notes to printer paper and ink
  • A hardcover classic notebook to record ideas, contacts, and resources. Maybe a second notebook to use as a personal journal to record successes, steps used to overcome challenges,and fears that need to be faced.

Gifts ideas for young female entrepreneurs at any stage of business

  • A one-on-one conversation by video chat or in person with a favorite female entrepreneur. The video conversations we have on our Girl’s CEO Connection YouTube channel are through Skype because most of the teens and entrepreneurs had Skype.For one-on-one conversations that are not being recorded any of the other video chat systems would work. Just be sure the entrepreneur who agrees with the conversation is comfortable using the suggested system.
  • Sam Horn’s book, POP! Create the Perfect Pitch, Title, and Tagline for Anything. This is an excellent gift full of practical ideas to get you, your business, ideas, or just about anything to get the positive recognition deserved.
  • Nancy Duarte’s book, Resonate, Present Visual Stories That Transform Audiences. There will be a time when a young entrepreneur needs to make a visual presentation to sell and excite an audience about her business. Resonate is more than a Power Point or Keynote slide show. It is a guide for a story-based message found to be the best way to get people excited about a business, especially for young entrepreneurs. Teenage girls already have the skills to tell stories. Resonate is a way for them to make their stories visible and relate them to their potential or current businesses.
  • Donna Dale Carnegie’s book, How to Win Friends and Influence People for Teen Girls. An entrepreneur at any stage of business needs friends to celebrate successes and give support when adversity comes along. Entrepreneurs want to cause a positive change through their businesses for their customers or causes.
  • Twyla Tharp’s book, The Creative Habit, Learn It and Use It for Life. Creativity is not just for artists, musicians, dancers, or performers. Creativity is for entrepreneurs who want to solve a problem or come up with a new way to make a difference. The Creative Habit is a guide on how daily routines and everything someone experiences feeds into their creativity to make it a habit.I read the book and learned so many tricks to open my mind to creative ways of thinking I had never considered. I also marked important ideas in it I can review even today.

If you have additional ideas on gifts for young female entrepreneurs please send them to us and we’ll add them into a new blog post. You can reach us at girlsceoconnect@icloud.com.


Merry Christmas and Happy Hanukkah everyone!

Sylvia Scott

Founder, Girl’s CEO Connection










November 28th Unknown

SHOP Your Favorite Small Businesses Saturday November 29th 2014

       We love Small Business Saturday!!! Every year we find the best deals and really special items in downtown Redlands, California. It is not a large downtown for sure-probably 10 square blocks. However it has some fun and very unique clothing stores and a fantastic consignment gallery. What is wonderful every Saturday is their farmer’s market held in a large parking lot in downtown.  I’ll be you will also find some great items in your local small business shops this Saturday.  Be sure to visit one of your local restaurants for lunch or dinner. They will appreciate you for a long time I guarantee it.


Latina Entrepreneur Nely Galan’s Advice to Future Female Entrepreneurs 

     Female entrepreneurs make the best role models for young girls interested in taking an idea and turning it into a viable enterprise. High school girls usually have a difficult time finding accomplished women entrepreneurs, of any age, to serve as a role model or mentors. These female entrepreneurs are definitely out there yet are not as self-promotional as their male peers.The Girl’s CEO Connection wants to see high school girls become more visible in their entrepreneurial journeys.

Ladies, it is time to meet some great women role models like Nely Galan.I doubt  she has ever had a challenge with self-promotion. Nely is one of the most accomplished and visible Latina entrepreneurs. She is the founder of The Adelante Movement and Galan Entertainment. Her favorite project is Count Me In for Women’s Economic Independence and a favorite with Donald Trump when she appeared on the Celebrity Apprentice. Girl’s CEO Connection was privileged to have Nely as a keynote speaker for the first Realizing a Vision conference. Her dynamic personality added the story of her entrepreneur journey. When I watched Nely’s presentation from the conference I decided to share it with you.

Images for Hispanic magazine of Nely GalanCheck it out on our Role Model Entrepreneurs page. Learn how selling Avon products while in high school at a private girl’s school in New Jersey got her on the road of being an entrepreneur. What high school girl would not want to be an intern for Seventeen Magazine? Listen to Nely tell her story of how she got an internship with Seventeen Magazine for her senior year of high school. That is another reason I see her as one of the best role models for young female entrepreneurs.

 This leads to my next section on this blog post. The book I have been writing for months now is on the second draft. The topics of the chapters are always part of our Realizing a Vision conference.Today I want to share with you some tidbits from the chapter, Minding Yourself. How to keep emotions under control as well as how you can transform business and personal relationships by not making assumptions  I am going to share with you some tidbits of the chapter on the Realizing a Vision, The Book page.

      Right now I would like to thank the young women who served on our Young Women’s Advisory Council for their support of the book and taking the time to critique the chapters. Nashley Ruiz (University of San Francisco ’13), Alexander Hoang (University of California Berkeley ’17), Kelly Trinh (University of California Berkeley ’17), and Ana Rivas (Pasadena City College ’14).

      If you would like to provide some input on a For any high school girl or college woman who would like to help with reviewing some chapters please contact me at sylvia@girlsceoconnection.com. The girls who work on it will receive name recognition in the book as well as including a headshot. I am also adding it to social media sites.

Look forward to hearing from you,

Sylvia Scott, Founder


Girl’s CEO Connection™ Facebook: www.facebook.com/GirlsCEOConnection

Twitter: @GirlsCEOConnect

YouTube: www.youtube.com/user/wisdomsylvia



This is something teenagers need to be told as well. If someone is 18 years old they were only 5 at the time.

Originally posted on Dr. Jennifer W. Shewmaker:

Today is the anniversary of the September 11 terrorist attacks that killed thousands and ushered in an era of suspicion, vulnerability, but also unity for those who stand against acts of terror.

Many children will be thinking and learning about the September 11 attacks. Here are some tips for supporting children as they process this and similar events. It was adapted from the National Association for School Psychologists resources. For the full resource page, click herheree.

Acknowledge children’s feelings:

Knowing what to say is often difficult. When no other words come to mind, a hug and saying “This is really hard for you/us” will work. Acknowledge that you don’t like terrorism or war either, but we hope that our country can stop the terrorists or help bring peace to other countries.

Try to recognize the feelings underlying children’s actions and put them into words. Say something like, “I…

View original 919 more words

Ana is an alum of the Girl’s CEO Connection Young Women Entrepreneurs advisory team. She’s got a growing photography business and we can’t wait to see where she goes with it.

June 25, 2014

 Young Women Entrepreneurs With a Good Attitude Make for a Recipe of Success

Our August 25 2012 and September 6 2012 posts, Your Attitude Impacts How You Operate Your Business are from the first draft of my book Realizing a Vision.

A couple of weeks ago I was talking to two members of our Young Women’s Leadership Advisory Council. Alexandra Hoang and Kelly Trinh just completed their freshman year at University of California Berkeley. They had reviewed the recent draft of the book. Part of our conversation was about the attitude chapter. We decided to delete the chapter and include the most important points into another chapter.

Attitude is such a key attribute to running and growing a business it warrants a new post on it.   A “good attitude” will take you much further in changing the outlook of your situation(s).

In my experience high school girls have a tough time developing and keeping a good attitude. There is competition with group acceptance and everyday interactions during and after school. Losing a boyfriend, a class election and dealing with a difficult teacher can drag any girl down and at times may result depression.

Developing a business while in high school takes a good attitude no matter what happens. What I just mentioned are a few examples that may get in the way of you becoming an entrepreneur in high school. Those events and similar ones may keep you from starting a business, keeping the business going and not giving up.

I wish I had known in high school about the four steps I am going to share with you. Using them would have helped me on the path of a positive attitude. I would have gone ahead and started the business I dreamed about. The same four steps would have helped me manage a lot of negative events and people in high school.

 Four steps to a good attitude that will impact how you start and operate your business are as follows:

  • A grateful attitude. In every event in your business whether it is good or bad there is a lesson to be learned. The people I know with a grateful attitude keep their minds free of negativity. Their minds are clear to find opportunities to change the situation, alleviate it for the future, or accept it and move on to keep the business going.
  • Exercise. There are a ton of good reasons to exercise. Physical activities that require concentration will keep the mind off of negative situations. For some of you exercise will be in after school team sports. If you do not like team sports exercises like swimming, dancing and gymnastics are great. Outdoor activities like downhill skiing, ice-skating, tennis and golf are also great to clear your mind. There are many more and I am sure you have a few you really enjoy. Most important the exercises that require focus usually move you into a better frame of mind.
  • “Fake it till you make it “ or “act as if.” In other words, smile and act as if you are on the upside rather than the downside. When you fake it till you make it you may find you feel better about yourself and the circumstances. It will also give other people the impression you are not bothered about the problem. You may become a role model for high girls who want to become an entrepreneur. Consider how you feel when you smile rather than when you have a scowl on your face.
  • Surround yourself with positive people and avoid the toxic ones. This is not as easy as it sounds. When a teacher, classmate or even relative creates a toxic environment it may not be possible to cut them out of your life. One way to handle someone’s toxic attitude is not to take anything personally. Make sure you have plenty of time away from them. By all means spend as much time as possible with positive people. For your business you will want to spend time with young female entrepreneurs.  They will want to see your business vision come to fruition. Some with more experience may want to mentor you. They will understand the challenges of being a young entrepreneur in high school.

In closing today, remember you are the one to define your life. There are the choices you make and then your Attitude with a capital ‘A.’ I encourage you to make the four steps a habit. Only you know how much your attitude is worth.

If you are a high school entrepreneur we would love for you to share with us how a good attitude has made a difference for you. Perhaps your attitude was not positive and you learned from it. Would you like to share what happened?

Look forward to hearing from you.


Sylvia R.J. Scott

Founder & Managing Director

Girl’s CEO Connection™



Girl’s CEO Connection™ Facebook: www.facebook.com/GirlsCEOConnection

Twitter: @GirlsCEOConnect

Realizing a Vision Facebook Group: http://www.facebook.com/groups/RealizingaVision

YouTube: www.youtube.com/user/wisdomsylvia





What I Learned at the Forte´ Foundation’s C2B (College to Business) Leadership Conference in San Francisco? 

May 31, 2014


Our guest contributor is Daiting Song, a sophomore at University California Los Angeles (UCLA) from Beijing China.  Daiting attended the Forte Foundation’s College to Business Leadership Conference in San Francisco, California. Daiting and I met when she was an intern for Startup UCLA in 2013.  She also helped me with the Realizing a Vision conference and we became friends through that time.  We thought it would be interesting to hear about the conference from the view of an international college woman.  Daiting leaves June 14th for a summer internship in Germany.  I do hope she will write a blog post for us about her internship and then when she returns in the September for classes  at UCLA.

DAITING SONG 2014 copy

A Look at the Forte´ Foundation’s College to Business Leadership Conference 

On April 12th I attended Forte´ Foundation’s C2B (College to Business) Leadership Conference in San Francisco, California. It was created for freshman and sophomore college women to explore opportunities in business for women. It was hosted by Deloitte® in their offices on Mission Street in downtown San Francisco. We arrived at 8 a.m. for registration and breakfast. The staff of Forte´ Foundation and Deloitte greeted us. We spent breakfast getting to know the other girls. While girls from across the United States attended, the majority of them were from the West Coast. C2B was also held in New York City at the beginning of April. Most people from the rest of the country were assigned to the New York conference.


What Our Day Looked Like

The first session of the day was the welcome speech by Denise Montana, director of corporate relations for the Forte´ Foundation followed with Christina Huddleson with Deloitte Consulting, Director. Libby Gill, CEO of Libby Gill & Company kicked off the day with a really interesting workshop, Igniting Bold Leadership. After the workshop there was a panel session with new female employees, fresh out of college. The young women introduced us to “real life” opportunities to get summer internships as well as what we needed to be doing to get our dream job.

The afternoon was all about teamwork. We were assigned to do a case competition as a team. Professor Marcel Zondag led the workshop/competition from Western Michigan University. The assignment was to pretend we were in the 1990s where computers are not used as common and popular as now. Imagine we are different companies that produce the computer and were in charge of allocating/pricing and everything in the supply chain. Each team was assigned two to three people as mentors who were working in the real world either in finance or consulting. Our mentors were both from banking, one from Wells Fargo Bank and the other from Citi Bank. Then after several click in the system the software would simulate the profit we got. Then after four quarters of decision-making, we got our final score. Our team didn’t win but it was a very interesting activity overall.

On our team, we did not have anyone familiar with marketing and allocating but we had a lot fun and learned a lot. Personally I’m not a fan of teamwork. As a linguistics and computer science major I am assigned to do everything alone and I work well alone. That being said I’m not saying I am not good at teamwork. Teamwork is more of an MBA thing as far as I am concerned. Everyone is on a similar page and have a certain level of understanding. But for teams assigned temporarily like ours I found it hard to take everyone’s opinion into consideration. Not everyone is in the zone or on the same page. So I’d have enjoyed it more if we had known each other previously and knew that our skill sets complemented each other.

After the case study we had a little network session with representatives from Deloitte Consulting, DaVita, Wells Fargo Bank, Citibank and other companies. Overall it was a great experience and I got to know a lot of people and listened to a lot of stories.

Daiting Song
UCLA ’16
Guest Contributor
We look forward to hearing from you as well.
Best regards,
Sylvia R.J. Scott
Founder, Girl’s CEO Connection™

March 22, 2014

Young Syrian Women in Jordan’s Zaatari Refugee Camp Use Their Skills and Learn New Ones to Open Businesses

Rania Abouzeid’s article in the March 2014 issue of  Marie Claire,  “Living in Limbo: The Women of Jordan’s Zaatari Refugee Camp”  reveals how Syrian women, young and old are making the most of a horrific situation.  Covering young female entrepreneurs during Women’s History Month would not be complete if young entrepreneur Syrian women were not included. 

While these women have been forced to leave their homeland, they do not sit around feeling sorry for themselves. The Zaatari refugee camp is Jordan’s fourth largest city and the world’s second largest refugee camp.  There are over 124, 000 Syrian refugees living there, yes that’s right 124,000.  Of that population 54 percent are female.

The young women I want you to meet are 19 and 20 years old.  What is different for these young women?

  1. There are no universities in Zaatari. Rather than complaining about it the young women are carving out productive lives for themselves while they wait to return to Syria.
  2. It is not uncommon for Syrian women in Zaateri to be entrepreneurs and business owners. They may become entrepreneurs as they are the heads of their households and need to support their families.
  3. Some of these young women, even at the age of 19 were successful business owners in Syria. They love to work and are passionate about what they do.

Of the five young entrepreneurs in Rania Abouzeid’s article, a fifth one was a business owner in Syria. I want to introduce you to two of them:

  • 19-year-old Aisha Hariri works with her family of entrepreneurial women.
  • 20-year-old Em Odai is a serial entrepreneur. In Damascus she owned a beauty salon and loved every minute of it. The salon was exquisite as she describes it. In the Zaatari refugee camp Em once again began a beauty salon along with a rental business of wedding dresses and evening gowns.

Like many other Syrian women in Zaatari, Aisha and Em Odai have taken their skills to learn or start a business that helps others in Zaatari.  Their businesses help to keep their spirits up while waiting to return to their homeland.

Aisha Hariri  is from a family of women entrepreneurs.  The women decided to combine their skills and open a family business preparing and selling makdous.  To do so they converted one of Zaatari’s communal kitchens into a production facility.  For Syrians and Lebanese makdous is a side dish made from baby eggplant stuffed with crushed walnuts, garlic, diced chili peppers and then pickled in olive oil.

Aisha Hariri  Photo by Rena Effendi Marie Claire magazine  March 2014

Aisha Hariri
Photo by Rena Effendi
Marie Claire magazine
March 2014

Aisha makes a little over $70 a month in the family business.  She graduated from high school and wants to attend a university to get a teaching degree. Asisha will need to wait until she returns to Syria to get her degree since Zaatari does not have any universities. In the meantime she is learning to sew while working with her entrepreneur relatives in their family business.  Do you think Aisha will start her own business after learning the ropes of her family’s business? Aisha Hariri is learning more than how to run a food production factory.  She is learning how to maneuver through a challenge faced by all family owned businesses. Can you guess what that might be?

Makdous Syrian stuffed eggplant

Makdous Syrian stuffed eggplant

Em Odai  photo by Rena Effendi Marie Claire 2014

Em Odai
photo by Rena Effendi
Marie Claire 2014

Em Odai  loves her profession as the owner of a beauty salon.  She doesn’t need to work yet she enjoys working and her passion makes it happen. In Damascus Em owned a beauty salon named “Beauty Queen.” As Em Odai describes it, the salon’s name was perfect for it. When she and her husband with their 2-year old son headed for Syria, two of her four suitcases held hairdressing equipment.  The equipment was taken at a checkpoint leaving her to with nothing to start all over in Zaatari.

Em Odai was able to open a beauty salon in Zaatari with partner who is also a female and refugee.  They split the cost of a trailer purchased from a United Nation’s donation.  While Em describes her new salon as “nothing special and boring” she would not be able to open it without a business partner.  One of Em’s customers, Hadiyee Malak was an entrepreneur in Damascus. She had a salon as well.  However Hadiyee does not have one in the camp because it is too expensive to set up a business like  “Salon Em Odai.”

As I said earlier, Em Odai is a serial entrepreneur. She also rents wedding gowns and evening dresses. Em’s businesses do so well she is able to have an assistant. Both of her businesses are filling needs for women in a city where women make up 54 percent of the population.  (Remember, Zaatari is the size of a small city and there is a need for special occasion dresses.) She has also provided a job for another young woman as her assistant.

I believe the stories of these Syrian women are a future chapter in Women’s History Month. The resiliency of young women from countries like Syria, Afghanistan, Rwanda, El Salvador and Guatemala provide the young women with the courage to make an impact in their communities.

These women are instrumental in the growth of the global economy.  They are making a difference with the education of their children and supporting their families, even those young women who are in their teens and early 20’s.

Read the complete article in the March issue of Marie Claire by clicking on: Living in Limbo: The Women of Jordan’s Zaatari Refugee Camp.”

We have two more post before March and Women’s History Month ends for 2014.  I am not going to tell you who or what will be highlighting, only that you will be happy with it.


Sylvia Scott, Founder, Girl’s CEO Connection™

Email: sylvia@girlsceoconnection.com

Twitter: @GirlsCEOConnect

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/girlsceoconnection

Female Entrepreneurs Come From Diverse Backgrounds with Very Diverse Business Visions-Part 2

Continuing with our celebration of  International Women’s Day 2014 we are highlighting Karen Jashinsky, founder and chief fitness director of O2MAX in Santa Monica, California female.  Karen’s business is at the other end of the spectrum from Hayley Hoverter with Sweet (dis) SOLVE.  Karen’s mission is to revolutionize the way students experience fitness.

K J Physical

I have known Karen for many years and love her entrepreneurial spirit and commitment to a healthy lifestyle and teenage girls and college women. The Girl’s CEO Connection™ is proud to have Karen on the Advisory Board and a presenter for our Realizing a Vision Conference.  Her commitment to physical fitness for both a strong body and mind fits right into the Girl’s CEO Connection™. To be equipped as a young entrepreneur being fit and healthy is key. After all it is more difficult to stay focused on your studies and business when you are tired and too stressed out to think clearly.  In fact Karen’s tips are included in my new book, Realizing a Vision.

Why is Karen’s business different that other physical fitness programs?

Karen’s innovative approach to fitness is designed for young people whether a high school student, college student or a young working professional. She takes an entrepreneurial approach with all her clients-students and adults and has a passion for helping people fit fitness into their busy schedules so they can reach their goals and maximize their lifestyles.

So what exactly is the O2MAX philosophy?  

Who does O2MAX work with primarily? 

We focus on young people. Whether a working professional juggling a hectic schedule, or a student getting ready for prom or graduation, O2 MAX creates a lifestyle-friendly fitness solution that is adaptable and completely personalized.

O2 MAX offers options that focus on important milestone events in people’s lives, like a prom, a wedding or a trip to the beach. Workout schedules can be adapted based on work and school schedules as well as stress and sleep schedules to promote maximum accountability and performance.  Read more

Why is Karen Jashinky considered a role model for entrepreneurs?  Read more on the Role Model Entrepreneur Page



Sylvia Scott, Founder, Girl’s CEO Connection

Email: sylvia@girlsceoconnection.com

Twitter: @GirlsCEOConnect

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/girlsceoconnection

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