WICHITA, Kan. (KSNW) – Camp Destination Innovation, NetWork Kansas and K-State recently hosted the Wichita Urban Youth Entrepreneurship Challenge. Young businessmen and women had the opportunity to compete for money to fund their business goals and participants are excited about the possibility of achieving their dreams. 

“This has been an incredible opportunity,” said Adelyn Stultz. “It’s definitely put me in a position to grow and prosper in this field.” 

Stultz, a senior at The Independent School, is this year’s winner. She makes her own on-trend gold and silver-plated jewelry called Adelyn’s Jewels. She said her brand is different because it’s affordable high-quality jewelry and is accessible across the country. 

Stultz already committed to attend KU’s business school in the fall and plans to take over the fashion and jewelry world. 

Nick Flores, the 2018 winner of the Wichita Urban YEC, bought his first investment property last year—just two weeks before his 20th birthday. He’s on his way to closing on his second property in a few weeks. 

Flores works as a leasing agent for Occidental Management—an opportunity he got by participating in YEC. Flores met Gary Oborny during the competition trade show. Oborny started mentoring Flores and eventually offered him a job with his company. 

“We have a really great community of business people [here in Wichita],” Flores said. “They really want to help you. They’re really looking out for your best interest because they want to see the city succeed.” 

NetWork Kansas started funding young business leaders’ dreams across the state of Kansas in 2013. They partnered with Camp Destination Innovation for the local challenge four years ago and are excited to see youth reinvest in their communities through their business plans.  

“I recognize the fact that once we show young people that we’re invested in them—their ideas what they create—we create this continuum of young people who have the tools, the resources, and the mindset to be successful leaders and entrepreneurs,” said Atkins. 

Now that someone invested in Flores, he’s using his resources to help out the next generation of business leaders. He even used his own money to fund the prize for the place winner in this year’s competition. 

Atkins hopes that the YEC will be a “golden ticket” for Wichita’s young people to turn their ideas into real sustainable businesses. 

“We can have the next White Castle and the next to Pizza Hut right here in Kansas. It’s exciting to see these young people get creative and thrive,” said Atkins.  

Stultz will compete at the state-level youth entrepreneurship challenge on April 27 at K-State.