Giving You The Business: Americans for the Competitive Enterprise System (ACES)
Americans for the Competitive Enterprise System, or ACES, has been promoting business in area schools since the 1950's. The main focus is running a business week at 11 high schools in our region. Students spend a week each year learning about business in a competition with prizes for the winners.
ACES Executive Director Valerie Laufenberg said, "It is a one week intense experience for the students where they are running their own company. So they get to understand how business operates and what kind of careers are available."
This week the entire junior class at Central High School, more than 250 students, are participating. They're divided into teams to build a product and make a profit.
Teacher Tom Koval said, "It was amazing how quickly they came together as a team, broke apart into individual groups and worked together. It was neat to see."
Volunteer Jeremy Lincoln of Lincoln Metal said, "I think it just gives them a sense that enterprises can fail. Everybody has to chip in and do their part. You just can't come in and walk through it."
It cost ACES about $13,000 to put on business week at each school. All of the money to prepare and put on the programs comes through donations.