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MANSFIELD -- Motivated students entering grades 6-12 who have the drive to start their own small business are invited to apply to the Young Entrepreneurs Academy (YEA!).

Applications are being accepted now through Sept. 20 for the 24-week class at www.yeausa.org.

YEA! is a groundbreaking program that transforms local middle and high school students into real, confident entrepreneurs.

Through the year-long program, students generate business ideas, conduct market research, write business plans, pitch to a panel of investors, and launch their real companies from the ground up, with instruction and inspiration from local leaders.

YEA! is ideal for creative, energetic students ages 11 to 18 interested in entrepreneurship.

Classes are made possible by Richland Area Chamber & Economic Development and meet weekly using a mix of virtual and in-person sessions on Tuesdays from October through May.

In-person classes will take place at North Central State College from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m.

The selection process is competitive and open to all middle and high school students.

YEA! will have two upcoming virtual information sessions that are free to the public on July 23 and Aug. 4 from 6 p.m. to 7 p.m. To register for the event, please visit www.richlandareachamber.com (under events) or contact the chamber.

Scholarships are available for students based on need and merit. For more information contact (419) 522-3211 or nlewis@richlandareachamber.com.

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