He may end up being a civil engineer, or possibly a mechanical engineer. But either way, 15-year-old Andrew Weaver wants to understand how entrepreneurship works.
“It would be good for me to expand my knowledge of the market of an entrepreneur. I want to know how they function and what they have to do to succeed in today’s market,” the Carolina Forest High School freshman said.
That’s precisely what Monica Brisbon teaches.
Brisbon is YEScarolina’s 2019 SC Entrepreneurship teacher of the year and she teaches entrepreneurship and personal finance.
She implemented the YES curriculum, which gives students the chance to create a real business while learning.
“They can actually implement the skills they’re learning in class into a real live business because once they get that understanding realistically, it motivates them,” she said.
Part of the curriculum are competitions judged by local business people.
Brisbon said the trend for students wanting their own businesses is very high right now. “But,” she added, “They have no idea what that entails. So, this entrepreneur class gives them experience where they can brainstorm goals and decide what kind of business they’d like to own.
Another of Brisbon’s students, Sriya Chalasani, a sophomore, wants to be in business as an accountant.
Her parents own a convenience store that she’s learned a great deal about since taking the entrepreneur class.
“I’ve learned that being an entrepreneur takes knowing the financials, takes hard work, and takes staying up-to-date so nothing goes wrong with the accounting.”
Passionate about building business and community partnerships, Brisbon is involved with the South Carolina Business Education Association [SCBEA], South Carolina Association of Career and Technical Education, [SCACTE], Association for Career and Technical Education, [ACTE], Mt. Vernon Baptist Church, Conway-Horry County MLK Planning Committee, and Mothers Against Violence.
She hosted Brizzy Beez Biz Camp last summer for students in underserved communities in Green Sea and Loris, and she’s been teaching at CFHS for 13 years.
She’s been involved with the School Improvement Council, the CTE Advisory Committee and the Inspiration Club.
She’s a former JV girls basketball head coach, has been a co-sponsor of the National Technical Honor Society, and is involved with the Principal’s Cabinet.
Brisbon graduated from Coastal Carolina University with a bachelor’s degree in business administration with a dual major in management and marketing.
She earned an MBA from Webster University and a degree in educational leadership from Arkansas State University.
She’s National Board Certified and was the 2017 National Fellow for ACTE.
Her personal mantra is, “If I can help somebody along the way, then my living will not be in vain.”
Her students attest that she indeed has helped them.
“She’s taught me valuable lessons that have pushed me,” Chalasani said about the teacher.
“I didn’t know anything about being an entrepreneur except that they own their own businesses and have flexible hours.”
“Entrepreneurship should start in kindergarten because there are so many young people with so many great ideas,” Brisbon said.
“Sitting down with them and helping them plan helps them be who they really are and builds their dreams and goals.”