updated 6/9/2011 6:46:39 AM ET 2011-06-09T10:46:39

NEW YORK, June 9, 2011 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- On Thursday, June 2nd, Long Island HS, W.T. Clarke bagged first prize for the third year in a row of the annual Junior Achievement of New York Business Plan Competition presented by The NASDAQ OMX Education Foundation. Team WizarDry's idea was selected as the best out of a pool of 185 teams who submitted business plans for the competition. Bronx Science High School's Team Caboost came in second and Newcomers High School received 3rd place honors. The 2011 Junior Achievement of New York Business Plan Competition was presented by The NASDAQ OMX Education Foundation and hosted at the NASDAQ MarketSite, located in Times Square.

To reach this point, the top three winning teams competed against over 900 high school students in an eight-week classroom-based, business plan writing boot-camp, where they were coached by corporate volunteers among the city's leading financial and corporate institutions. The final six teams survived several rounds of competition requiring them to pitch their winning business ideas to seasoned business executives and entrepreneurs, with the ultimate goal of being singled out as having the next big winning business idea that could put them on the pathway to success.

First place winners team "WizarDry," comprised of students Arjan Singh, Alexandra Knorr, Jelyssa Fuertes and Michelle Colvin conceived a simple, but winning business idea to develop and market a high tech water-proof cell phone case. The case is constructed from a fabric that was invented by the British during World War II to keep pilots alive if they got shot down in the sea. It's a fabric that has also been used to make fire hoses and high-end hiking gear. The young high school biz wizzes thought it provided an excellent opportunity to prevent mobile devices suffering long term water damage and/or system failure.

Team member Jelyssa Fuertes follows in the footsteps of her big sister Shannon, who was a member of the student business plan team that started the three year winning trend by W.T. Clarke High School students, two years ago. It wasn't an easy win. Competition from rival teams was tough, but team WizarDry narrowly won over the panel of judges with their polished presentation style, attention to details and a solid marketing strategy. The W.T. Clarke team was coached by volunteers from FedEx Express. Members of the winning team were awarded a cash prize of $3,000 each, iPhones courtesy of AT&T, a trophy for their school, and they participated in The NASDAQ Stock Market Closing Bell Ceremony – along with the 2nd and 3rd place teams, in recognition of their outstanding achievements.

BRONX HIGH SCHOOL OF SCIENCE BOOST SECOND PLACE PRIZE

Bronx High School of Science students – Team Caboost - were one of the youngest aspiring entrepreneurial teams to make it to the final round. They were awarded the second place prize in the competition. Tenth graders Jackson Finio, Matthew BuxBaum, Graham Campbell and Joshua Yellin-Flaherty were narrowly edged out of first place by less than 0.6 of a point. Team Caboost conceived the idea of a mobile app and a subscriber based software to make it easier for commuters to hail a cab. Their idea leverages GPS technology to help commuters and taxi-drivers to quickly locate each other in a busy city. The app would enable commuters to alert drivers to their location and will deliver key information such as pick-up location, how many people are travelling, their destination and any special needs of passengers. Passengers would know how close the cab is to their location and estimated arrival time. Members of 2nd place team were awarded a cash prize of $2,000 each, and a trophy for their school.

NEW KIDS ON THE BLOCK – NEWCOMERS HIGH SCHOOL TAKE THIRD PRIZE

Newcomers High School team "Little Angels" lived up to the name of their school as the new kids on the block in the Business Plan Competition. They received 3rd place in the competition – a real victory for their school since this is the first year that Newcomers High School had students participating in the Junior Achievement of New York Business Plan Competition.

Team members Israel DaSilva, Angie Munoz, Anibal Benitez and Jessica Melchiorre excited the judges and spectators with the simplicity and uniqueness of their business idea. They conceived a unique and highly marketable idea for a baby mobile device with a personal and highly emotional competitive advantage. The high tech mobile would allow parents and extended family members to connect with young children even when they are thousands of miles apart. The team scored high points for their well thought out business product, their research, development and marketing plan. Team "Little Angels" were coached by MetLife corporate volunteers. Members of 3rd place team were awarded a cash prize of $1,000 each and a trophy for their school.

With the generous support of The NASDAQ OMX Education Foundation, Junior Achievement of New York's vision is to establish a connection for teens between what they learn in school and how this knowledge is applied in the business world. Entrepreneurship education is a good way for students to develop critical work skills and experience. As with previous generations, entrepreneurship is also a proven pathway out of poverty. Junior Achievement encourages business and education to invest in the power of entrepreneurship as a means to engage and prepare youth to be future business leaders. Teens learn that it's not enough just to have a great idea; they also need to know the science of starting and running a business. JA programs empower and motivate students to create their own pathways to economic stability by encouraging them to be creative problem solvers and contributors in the local and national economies.

JA New York is grateful for the support of founding partner, G. C. Anderson Partners, LLC and pro‐bono partners: Angelsoft, iMentor, AT&T, and Columbia Business School.

About Junior Achievement of New York

For more than 80 years, Junior Achievement of New York (JA New York), the local affiliate of JA USA, has delivered economic education and empowerment programs to NYC and Long Island students. Through a dedicated volunteer network of corporate and community individuals, JA New York provides high-quality K-12 in-school, after-school, and summer educational programs. JA New York educational programs impact important societal issues including youth development, economic development, and education reform, and focus on three key content areas: work readiness, entrepreneurship, and financial literacy. For more information about JA New York and its programs, Visit us: www.jany.org Like Us: Facebook  Connect with Us: LinkedIn  Follow Us: Twitter Subscribe to Us: YouTube

About The NASDAQ OMX Education Foundation:

The mission of The NASDAQ OMX Educational Foundation is to promote learning about capital formation, financial markets and entrepreneurship through innovative educational programs. It was established in New York City in 1994 and is supported entirely by contributions from The NASDAQ OMX Group, Inc.

CONTACT: PRESS CONTACTS
         Jacqueline Dolly
         Junior Achievement of New York
         (212)-907-0046
         jdolly@jany.org
         
         Robert Madden
         The NASDAQ OMX Group, Inc.
         (646) 441-5045 (office)
         Robert.Madden@NASDAQOMX.com

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