February 17, 2019; Lincoln Experience Center
Written by Li Shen and Macy Su
Youth Entrepreneur Society’s February meeting once again proved to be a gem of information for high school students looking into colleges and future careers. YES Co-Founder and President, Macy Su, opened the second meeting of the new year with a very special guest—Mayor Jeff Cheney.
Most students feel the everlasting pressure that whatever path they pick at college will bind them to a certain job for life. But Jeff Cheney, Mayor of Frisco, thinks otherwise. With his roots originally in real estate, Cheney never imagined he was going to end up in politics, especially not as the leader of the fastest growing city in America. But now, he wouldn’t have it any other way.
Through the years, Frisco City Council has faced more than a few bumpy roads. In 2016, Frisco took a risk and bought The Star, a 91-acre piece of property, for 23 million dollars in hopes of attracting Nebraska Furniture Mart to the location. However, when the business moved to The Colony, their plans were shattered.
So what happened?
Just when everything seemed to be unraveling, the Dallas Cowboys entered the scene and offered to move their worldwide headquarters to none other than The Star. What seemed like a huge failure had really turned into one of Frisco’s biggest wins. “Your career is a journey, so take risks,” says Cheney, “It’s not failure if you learn from it.”
From businessman to the mayor, Cheney’s goal is to help Frisco grow in its own unique way. “We aren’t a “Same As Last Year” city, we redefine things and learn from our mistakes.” “Don’t be a SALY (Same As Last Year)” Mayor Cheney advises not only businesses, but individuals as well to grow each year, a higher goal always in mind.
After the first session, Debbie Chang, an alumni interviewer from Duke University, introduced the topic of college applications and job interviews. From clothing to online interactions to resumes, the students get incredibly valuable insight into what the top dogs are looking for.
Ann Anderson, recipient of the 2018 Volunteer of the Year Award, discussed the importance of business etiquette. She emphasizes setting yourself apart and doing research beforehand; both women value a single piece of advice: “Be prepared”
Mrs. Chang conducted a mock interview, where students were asked typical questions such as “Where do you see yourself in ten years?” Member Anderson Shih replies with a general answer, to which Mrs. Chang advises against: “Be specific, there’s a million other people with the same generic answer.” So he tries again, “I see myself working at Tesla in 10 years to help combat climate change.”
Although answers vary by the different interests of each student, they all truly reflect the great things young businessmen and women are dreaming about for their futures and what’s to come.
And one final piece of wisdom from Mrs. Ann Anderson, “Set yourself apart,” she says, “Ask questions, and don’t be afraid to be bold.”