1. Connor Blakley, 16
Connor Blakley is a founder, speaker, and branding consultant. At the age of 15, he began a social media agency that grew to serving 50+ small and medium sized businesses across the United States.
Connor's latest venture is ARCB a youth consulting agency that helps brands better connect with the always evolving younger generation. ARCB generates custom youth advisory boards to help develop a relevant engaging marketing and brand strategy that connects with the younger generations. ARCB integrates a brand and marketing strategy leveraging new technologies, social media platforms, and the creation of real world experiences to create an authentic relationship with young consumers.
Being able to target the younger generation is a huge problem for many organizations, so I will definitely be watching ARCB in the coming years to see how they solve this problem for businesses around the world.
2. Eli Wachs, 17
Eli Wachs is a social entrepreneur who started High School HeroesX to help high school students meaningful affect their communities through crowd sourced innovation. It currently has seven challenges in development, from Philadelphia to Beijing, tackling issues such as low high school graduation rates, teen mental health, and food safety. The list of achievements Eli has had at such a young age is very impressive.
He was one of two high school students selected to attend the inaugural Forbes 30 Under 30 Summit and is a member of his school's Cum Laude chapter. He was a National Geographic Your World in Focus finalist and Peoples Choice Award winner in 2013. He led the first ever XPrize Teen Visioneering program in 2015, and is the YSA Youth Ambassador for the state of Pennsylvania for 2015-2016. He has been featured on NBC, CBS, Huffington Post and Forbes. He'll be attending Stanford next fall.
3. Max Baron, 17
Max is the founder and CEO of PrepReps, a company he started at the age of 15 to connect social influencers on high school and college campuses with brands looking to grow young loyalty. PrepReps vets students, uses an algorithm to score them based on their social following, and stores their info in a database. Brands pay around $15 per rep per month, guaranteeing from 10 to hundreds of representatives will wear their product around campus.
PrepReps says it has made $40,000 in revenue — 99% of which is pure margin — and touts a portfolio of 11 brand clients, including Shelltur Cases, PrepObsessed, Jadelynn Brooke and Charleston Green Apparel. It also has a database of 2,500 vetted students from more than 500 high school and college campuses around the country. Students include bloggers and active social posters with 10,000 to 50,000 followers each. Collectively they have a combined social following of just under 1 million people.
4. Noa Mintz, 15
Noa Mintz is the 15 year old founder of Nannies By Noa, a full-service child care agency, serving families in New York City and the Hamptons. With its large network of highly experienced sitters and nannies that possess a passion for children, Nannies by Noa is the leading destination for reliable, engaging, and educated childcare providers.
Like many entrepreneurs, Noa experienced first-hand an issue that needed improvement — caregiver accountability: her parents wanted trust and assurance, and she and her siblings wanted a “city-savvy” babysitter who was cool and fun. By the time she was 12, she had successfully secured caregivers for her own family, and had begun recruiting for other families in New York City. Nearly 6 months later, Noa launched Nannies By Noa which was built around her innovative approach to matching families and caregivers. Along with her talented team, Noa raises the bar of what to expect from a caregiver, making it standard practice for her nannies to be active and engaged participants in the lives of the children they care for.
5. Aaron Easaw, 18
Since the age of 11, Aaron Easaw has pursued entrepreneurship on a high level, and has had a passion for business management and aiding up and coming entrepreneurs. Since the development of his initial company Easaw Development, a computer software company offering advanced technologies and services to clients in 5 continents, Aaron has had a constant sense of progression and dedication to his corporations.
With a belief that “age doesn’t define your ability”, Aaron has developed numerous corporations, including the multi-investor INC.UBATOR venture capital firm. INC.UBATOR is a firm created for young entrepreneurs under the age of 30 with a preference towards under 20 entrepreneurs. The fund is a micro-cap venture capital fund focused on building and investing in young entrepreneurs all around the world. The program is a six-week business accelerator created for high schoolers in the city of Austin, Texas.
If you are a high school student with a game changing idea, check out INC.UBATOR.
Now, Your Turn
Learning about the achievements of these high school entrepreneurs is inspiration that anything is possible, no matter your age.
If you haven't already started on your entrepreneurial journey, just remember that it doesn't matter if you are 13 or 50. Anyone can make their dreams come true - and it all starts with taking action. Make 2016 the year that you decided to take action and pursue your passion.