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FPC trio advances to national entrepreneurship challenge

For the second year in a row, Flagler Palm Coast High School is sending a regional finalist to the national Youth Entrepreneurship Challenge.

Rising sophomores Roman Savko, Darian Miroshnik and Leon Grigoruk were among six finalists at the May 13 Southeast Regional Final in Fort Lauderdale. They will advance to nationals in October in New York City. The competition is sponsored by NFTE (the Network For Teaching Entrepreneurship).

Last year, Hailey Tucker advanced to the semifinal round at nationals when the event was held virtually. This year, the three FPC students will go to New York to pitch their idea — Peers, a tutoring business for students, by students.

“They’re go-getters. They’re very motivated,” said their entrepreneurship teacher, Corinne Schaefer. “Peers is an online platform that’s affordable and accessible and focusing on students who need help.”

The three won $500 in cash and $150 in Amazon gift cards at the regional final.

“We’re going to split the gift cards for our own use, but the $500 will be strictly for our business,” Savko said.

“We were thinking of problems in our school. Kids want affordable tutoring service, and they want to do it at home.”


Peers would pair up student tutors who are proficient in a subject with students who need help. As a business, they would charge $20 an hour with the tutor receiving $15 an hour. But they have received tentative approval to begin as a school club in August with tutors receiving community service hours instead of paying and those getting tutored receiving a free service.

“We were thinking of problems in our school,” Grigoruk said. “Kids want affordable tutoring service, and they want to do it at home.”

Savko, Miroshnik and Grigoruk are working on a website where tutors and those seeking the service can register. But the actual tutoring would be on a video conferencing platform, such as Zoom.

“A lot of tutoring is expensive,” Savko said. “And it might be with a teacher they are not as comfortable with. (Working with) another student might be more comfortable.”

The service is especially needed these days with so many students still behind from remote learning during the pandemic, Savko said.

“A lot of people cheated through the pandemic, or they just didn’t care. They didn’t have anyone to force them to do the work. They didn’t have a teacher around,” Savko said.

Back row, Jasmine Williams, Regan Rust, Meily Suarez-Tirse and Cody Stoner. Front row: Ashlee Ramierez and Makel Collins. Stoner and Suarez-Tirse were runners-up in the classroom competition. Courtesy photo.

Savko, Miroshnik and Grigoruk are all pre-IB students and will probably do some tutoring themselves just to get the program started, Savko said.

“I’m really excited,” Grigoruk said. “Now we’ll have the opportunity to really prepare our pitch and have everything down. And it’s in New York, which is pretty cool.”

Of the top 100 business pitches in the Southeast region, nine came from FPC’s entrepreneurship program. In addition to Peers, another FPC group advanced to the Regional Final. Ashlee Ramierez, Jasmine Williams, Makel Collins and Regan Rust advanced with their business proposal, No More Chaff, No More Cheek, a chafing stick that goes directly on your jeans to prevent friction that causes holes to rip between your thighs.

Schaefer, who is FPC’s career and technical education department chair, said 48 FPC students have received their small business certification.

“We have an articulation agreement with Daytona State College,” Schaefer said. “Students get three business credits if they pass principles of entrepreneurship or business law and management and pass the certification test.”