When Farrhad Acidwalla was in the eighth grade, he borrowed $10 from his parents to buy his first domain name. He began building a web community devoted to aviation and aero-modeling. The website took off and eventually Farrhad decided to move on, selling the site for far, far more than his initial $10 investment.
Many similar ventures followed. Each took his achievement to another level and the appreciations left him humble. This motivated him to offer his work under the name of his company.
Since, Farrhad has launched Rockstah Media, a cutting-edge company devoted to web development, marketing, advertisement, and branding. It is just over a year old but it has clients and a full fledged team of developers, designers and market strategists spread across the globe. As the CEO and founder, Farrhad is responsible for taking care of the clients and guiding the creative team to success.
At 16, Farrhad is planning to continue running Rockstah Media, while studying finance at India’s prestigious H.R. College of Commerce & Economics. In his free time, Farrhad enjoys hanging out with friends, playing Playstation, reading, watching movies, and playing the guitar.
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Growing up in Connecticut, Juliette Brindak used to start bake sales, lemonade stands, and garage sales. But when she was 10 years old, her entrepreneurial horizons expanded during a routine family vacation.
Juliette created a series of drawings of girls, one of whom was named Miss O. Everyone liked the characters so much that she kept drawing them – and soon enough, her family joined in to help bring the characters to life.
In 2005, Juliette launched MissOandFriends.com, a by-girls-for-girls site where tweens can go to safely interact, get advice in a supportive community, and play flash games that range from fashion contests to mini golf. The Miss O characters offer positive role models for growing girls and they’ve been featured in a series of books that have sold over 120,000 copies collectively. In 2008, Procter & Gamble invested in Miss O and Friends and estimated the company’s value at $15 million dollars.
Today, the Miss O and Friends team includes over 30 people – including 15 interns, a board of 12 people, a webmaster, a lawyer, a school psychologist, and Juliette’s mom and dad. Juliette is the spokesperson and a writer for the website. She’s also going into her senior year at Washington University in St. Louis, MO, studying anthropology.
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Arjun Rai caught the entrepreneurial bug at the age of seven, selling knickknacks that he found around the house. Once in his native India, young Arjun set up shop to sell leftover wildflower necklaces after a wedding. He and a cousin put up a banner at his grandmother’s front gate, asking 25 cents.
TV shows like ‘The Oprah Show’ and ‘The Big Idea with Donny Deutsch’ inspired Arjun to take entrepreneurship to the next level. During the summer of 2009, he got a LinkedIn account (under the name Aaron Ray) and started connecting with other ambitious entrepreneurs, hoping to learn as much as possible about the art of entrepreneurship and business.
In 2010, Arjun became the COO of a quickly growing onlineadvertising company, but he soon set out to follow his own,unique vision. That vision is a brand-new venture called odysseyAds.Though he’s just getting started, Arjun plans to buildodysseyAds into a premier online advertising network with afocus on customer service, maximizing ROI, and catering to 21stcentury marketer needs. In the midst of all this, Arjun also justcompleted his junior year of high school. He’s 18 years old.
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When Stanley Tang was an 11-year-old growing up in Hong Kong, his school banned snack foods. Instead of taking his empty stomach in stride, Stanley bought snacks at the local convenient store and sold them to his classmates for three times the price.
A few years later, he was introduced to Google Adsense and the ‘Rich Dad, Poor Dad’ series of books by Robert Kiyosaki. They inspired him to get online with his business and to develop a book called ‘eMillions: Behind-The-Scenes Stories of 14 Successful Internet Millionaires’. When ‘eMillions’ was published in December of 2008, it rocketed straight to the top of the Amazon Best-Seller lists. At just 14 years old, Stanley was the world’s youngest best-selling author.
Since, he has been making six figures with his blogs, StanleyTang.com and TheUniversityKid.com, which he eventually sold to another young entrepreneur. Stanley also just graduated high school in May of 2010 and he will be attending Stanford University in the fall, where he plans to study computer science.
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JuniorBiz wouldn’t exist if we felt that the public school system was already giving kids a fair chance to explore entrepreneurship. Most schools in the U.S. don’t even try.
But Cathy Hettleman has taken on the challenge. She is the new coordinator of ACE Transitions at Ft. Collins High School (FCHS) in Ft. Collins, Colorado.
ACE is a program that has traditionally helped kids develop career skills through special programs and internships. It’s also traditionally full of students who don’t fit the ‘straight-A’ mold. Since Cathy started at the beginning of the year, four of her 18 students have already dropped out of high school.
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