Grand Strand SCORE developed the Junior Apprentice Program in conjunction with the Georgetown County School System and Georgetown Chamber of Commerce. It is further sponsored by Palo Alto Software. The program is designed to increase local high school students' business knowledge as well as their passion for learning. Thus far, over 160 students have attended Junior Apprentice and non have dropped out of high school. This is significant because the drop out rate in the Georgetown County School System is close to fifty percent.
During the four days of the course, rising freshman and sophomore high school students learn basic business principles, writing a business plan and presentation skills. At he beginning of the week, the participants break into teams, choose a team leader and brainstorm a business concept. As the week progresses, they learn market research, finances and operations as they write each section of their plan. On the afternoon of the fourth day, the teams present their plans to a local CEO as though they were looking for investors. The average student attends eight hours of classroom a day and completes six hours of self-assigned homework. Students participating in this program pay no fees.