Business Bootcamp

**Only a few spots left! Register now to secure a spot.


$795; $100 deposit due at time of registration

Date & Time

July 25-29 (Monday - Friday), 10am - 4:30pm CST

Program Registration


Registration is open until filled. Register now to secure a spot! Please view our policies and resources page, including our COVID-19 vaccine policy, before registration. 


Mies Campus


Rising 10th - 12 graders

Program Overview

The Stuart School of Business is hosting an engaging and relevant business-focused, week-long summer program for high school students called "Running A Small Business:  Food for Thought.” Students will explore five pillars of business: economics, operations, entrepreneurship, finance, and marketing through the lens of owning, opening, managing, and operating a food truck. They will get to participate in hands-on business simulations and design their own food truck business model, plus on the last day, the program will commence with a meet and greet afternoon lunch with a couple of high profile Chicago food truck owners. The program will be led by BSBA program director John Twombly (Ph.D., University of Chicago, Accounting) and students will explore unique learning outcomes and business center skills with the following faculty members: Dr. Ben VanVliet (Ph.D. - Stuart School of Business, Management Science_, Dr. Liz Durango-Cohen (Ph.D., University of California, Berkeley, Industrial Engineering and Operations Research), Professor Nik Rokop (M.D.M., Illinois Institute of Technology Institute of Design), Mr. Pouya Haddadian (Ph.D. student at Stuart School of Business, Management Science), & Dr. Dinakar Jayarajan (Ph.D., USC Marshall School of Business, Business Administration (Marketing)). 

Over the course of five days, high school rising sophomores, juniors, and seniors will have the opportunity to participate in a series of three-hour seminars from these esteemed faculty members to explore the five key pillars of business. In addition to becoming familiar with “The Language of Business,” here is what you can expect to take away from this fascinating summer program:

Exploring the 5 Key Pillars of Business

Economics/Food Truck Simulation and Econoland Simulation: Mr. Pouya Haddadian

We will jumpstart our business boot camp journey with an entertaining game. You are about to establish a food truck business and you will face the decisions over the menu items, location, and your food truck capacity! You will learn how your decisions affect the revenue of your food truck. In the afternoon session, you are going to have even more fun! You will take over a country and will make its monetary decisions. Let’s see if you can improve the economy and make your people happy!

Operations: Dr. Liz Durango-Cohen

Now it’s time to figure out how to operate your food truck. Calculate inventory, ordering process, employee needs, and equipment. We will discuss how decisions change as one moves from a small business to a larger, more established organization. In addition to using MS Excel to analyze sales, costs, we will also  explore an important data visualization tool, Tableau in the process. 

Entrepreneurship: Professor Nik Rokop

Having learned some basics of food truck operations from the previous sessions and simulations, you will have the opportunity to develop a startup plan for a food truck or related business. In teams, you will choose the kind of food you want to provide, develop a brand, learn how to decide where to run your food truck business, and get enough information together to do the next step: finding funding for your food truck business (Finance: next session)! In a later session on Marketing, you will learn how to tell the world about your special food truck!

Finance: Dr. Ben Van Vliet 

In the finance session, we're going to talk about money. And, we're going to talk about how people raise money so they can open a Food Truck, create a phone app or a video game, or even buy Bitcoin. We're also going to talk about trading stocks and Bitcoin and how people think about trying to make money from trading. It's all super cool stuff.

Marketing: Dr. Dinakar Jayarajan 

Marketing is the key to success. You have a great product, now how will you get people to learn about it and buy it?  In the marketing seminar, you will learn the strategies and tactics that will get your food truck on the grid!

Business Bootcamp Sample Schedule - Summer 2022

July 25-29 2022


Morning (9 am to 12 noon)


Afternoon (1 pm to 4 pm)


July 25

Opening Ceremony, Orientation, Residential Check-in 

12-1 PM 

Intro to the Language of Business 
(John Twombly)

July 26

Food Truck Simulation

12-1 PM 

Macro Simulation

July 27

Operations of a Food Truck
(Prof. Durango-Cohen)

Computer Lab

12-1 PM 

Food Entrepreneurship
(Nik Rokop)

July 28

Finance 101
(Prof. Van Vliet)

12-1 PM 

Stages of Financing a Food Truck  

July 29

Marketing a Food Truck 
(Dr. Krishna Erramilli)

12-1 PM 

Food Truck Tour

Closing Ceremony