Passion-driven Business Mindset in High School

SET High student raises their acoustic guitar up over their head. Developing passion and an entrepreneurial mindset in high school rocks.

Passion-driven Business Mindset in High School

How cool is your school? Are you building a passion-driven path for your future? We are!

The School for Entrepreneurship & Technology (SET High) is a WASC credentialed, tuition-free public high school in San Diego that was named a California Distinguished School. Not to brag, but we’re an awesome high school full of changemakers and we’re just warming up.

Passion Projects Back on Track

COVID threw a wrench in our usual flow of school, so this year we’re bringing Passion Projects back. Passion Projects help students reignite their love for learning, discover their purpose, and curate opportunities for a bright entrepreneurial future. Any SET High student can elect for a Passion Project, but they are not mandatory. If we make them mandatory, we squash the passion that fuels the projects. What fuels passion? Support. This year SET High is allocating some COVID relief dollars to incentivize and fund our students’ projects. 

Pitch Perfect

In order for a student to receive their Passion Project funding, they need to do some research, figure out what type of funding they may need and create a pitch. Once their pitch is approved, they will be assigned a mentor. Mentors can be a staff member, teacher, parent/guardian, or community member. Mentors help our students shape their ideas into a business plan with goals and a timeline. Even getting to this initial phase of the project develops a healthy entrepreneurial mindset. 

Looking Up & Ahead

What else fuels passion? Inspiration. Our belief is that by bringing Passion Projects back, with one hour a week dedicated to the cause, students who are new to SET and may choose not participate this year will see the cool stuff created and start dreaming of their own potential. 

For our students who complete Passion Projects this year, we are creating a link to bright futures beyond high school, with documented proof of project success. Our new logging process encourages transparency while inviting ongoing support. 

“Making the process formal helps avoid conversations like, ‘Are you working on your project?’ Answer: ‘Yep.’ Instead we want to inspire conversations like, ‘What issues have you found? Do you have a solution in mind?said Principal Dr. Neil McCurdy. “This could be a great success story with a college or career application. ‘Here’s what I built. This is my record of it and how I accomplished my goal.’”

Projects in Progress

Giving our students space to talk about their ideas can help bring them to life. A switch clicks in a student’s brain when they realize they are creating a passion-driven business for profit. A few of the current Passion Project ideas brewing this year include:

  • Macrame that matters: three students already pitched their project and requested $300 worth of yarn. They plan to give 15% of their proceeds back to the school.
  • Grocery-getter to race car: students propose to remove everything from a current Mazda and create a frame for street car racing. They have mock-ups already for a lighter, faster car by getting rid of all the steel. 
  • Guitar girl guild: 7-8 students who identify as female propose to build guitars from scratch, as well as the picks.

Entrepreneurship experience in high school is invaluable. At SET High, we’re cultivating a passion-driven entrepreneurial mindset for the changemakers of our future. Would your student like to reignite their love for learning in an inclusive and inspiring free public high school? It’s not too late to switch to SET High and work on a Passion Project with us. We’re enrolling today!

About SET High 

SET High offers each student individual attention from multi-talented, highly qualified teachers. Students build a healthy camaraderie with classmates inside an intellectually rigorous environment that brings out individual talents and personality, helping develop character and direction in life. With a wide variety of electives, flexible scheduling, dual enrollment college classes and more — our students regularly exceed academic and personal expectations. Enrolling now!