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May & June 2023

Hello ECM Families,

ECM’s Summer STEAM Institutes are launching across the state in Allendale, Bamberg, Barnwell, Calhoun, Clarendon, Colleton, Hampton, Jasper, Sumter, and Orangeburg Counties.

Before we welcome the campers with oodles of bubbles and music, I’d like to take a moment to celebrate the spring programs.

During the school day, over 3,200 K-8 students participated in 71 in-school Engaged Learning Experiences (ELEs) in 38 schools in Berkeley, Charleston, Dorchester 2, and Dorchester 4 Counties.

After school, over 300 students participated in robust arts integration and entrepreneurial experiences during ECM’s Power-On Clubs at Bamberg-Ehrhardt High School in Bamberg County, Williston-Elko Middle/High School and Kelly Elementary School in Barnwell County, Sedgefield Middle in Berkeley County, CE Williams Middle and North Charleston High School in Charleston County, Estill Elementary in Hampton County, and Bethune-Bowman Middle/High School in Orangeburg County.  

In April, high school students from across the state joined us in Columbia for the 12th Annual YEScarolina State Business Plan Competition.  Students were inspired by entrepreneur Carrie Morey from Callie’s Hot Little Biscuit and Carl Blackstone, CEO of the Columbia Chamber of Commerce who shared their business and life experiences along with other leaders from our community including ECM board members Perry Morrissette and Clifford Fulmore.

You can see all these as well as the upcoming summer fun on our social media – – – WOOHOO!

As always, thank you for supporting our work and championing the arts in our schools!

Power On!

YEScarolina State Business Plan Competition Recap!



YEScarolna’s 12th Annual State Business Plan Competition was held at Brookland Baptist Church’s Youth & Teen Center on Friday, April 21, 2023.  The last round of competition showcased five talented high school student entrepreneurs from across the state who competed to win seed money for their businesses during this shark tank-style of entrepreneurship competition. We celebrated a day of fun-filled and action-packed rounds of business plan competition with the most outstanding in the state of young high school student entrepreneurs! The highlights included the following: three rounds of competition, a business networking expo that showcased the student’s business plan with a display of products or prototypes, a keynote speaker, and a final round of competition with 10 judges representing business communities from around the state. 

The business plan competition, hosted by Engaging Creative Minds, began at 8 am and was attended by students representing high school entrepreneurship classes from across the state. Through three rounds of competition and with 40 student business plan competitors, the top eighteen were selected and celebrated after lunch.  The competition featured a keynote speaker, Carrie Morey, CEO and founder of Callie’s Hot Little Biscuits.  She was able to inspire the student competitors with her inspirational entrepreneurial journey about her famous biscuits. After the second round of competition, the top five students were selected for finals. The grand finale showcased the best in the state and each student had an opportunity to present their business plan for a chance to win seed money to launch their venture.  

The biggest surprise of the day was honoring David Fralix from Wando High School as the 2023 YEScarolina State Entrepreneurship Teacher of the Year!  He received a $1000 check and a plaque for this prestigious recognition.  

We also celebrated the outstanding entrepreneurship teachers and awarded them a Starbucks gift card along with funds to support each teacher’s fall and spring semester in-class business plan competition for 22 classrooms which totaled $11,000. 

There were 35 judges that attended the event from all over South Carolina, and they represented businesses and organizations as CEO’s, managers, owners, business and educational leaders. They came far and wide with some judges serving most or all of the day. We thank them for their serve and couldn’t have done it without their invaluable contribution and participation.

Please check our website for more details about the business plans of our top five student winners!  We look forward to the 2024 YEScarolina State Business Competition and stay tuned for details on our website.   A BIG thank you to our donors that made this all possible!  It was the BEST YEScarolina State Business Plan Competition EVER!  WOOHOO!

Afterschool Fun!

ECM is excited to share that we have implemented new afterschool programs across the state!

Students at Sedgefield Middle school are working with ECM instructor, Andres Liviola, to learn about the different principles of audio mixing and editing. They are creating their own original music tracks, podcasts, and more!

Orangeburg County students combined art and science by creating sculptures to learn about structure and weight distribution, while other students are learning about creative writing through artistic infographics. There are also students creating original music tracks and vlogs!

Bamberg County students are unleashing creativity and talent! From the captivating band club and harmonious melodies of the chorus club, to the vibrant designs of sublimation, digital art, and entrepreneurship, these students are learning SO MUCH through the arts!

Barnwell County students flexed their musical muscles in band club. Barnwell also has some awesome step and digital art clubs!

This program is supported by Arts Grow SC which is funded by the South Carolina Arts Commission and the South Carolina Department of Education through American Rescue Plan Elementary and Secondary Schools Emergency Relief (ARP ESSER) funds.

Summer STEAM Institute® is back!

Our national award winning summer camp program will be in 10 districts: Allendale, Bamberg, Barnwell, Calhoun, Clarendon, Colleton, Hampton, Jasper, Orangeburg, and Sumter.

Our highly successful, national award-winning Summer STEAM Institute® features arts integrated learning and instruction, and is winner of the 2016 New York Life Foundation Excellence in Summer Learning Award! Click the button below to learn more.

This program is supported by Arts Grow SC which is funded by the South Carolina Arts Commission and the South Carolina Department of Education through American Rescue Plan Elementary and Secondary Schools Emergency Relief (ARP ESSER) funds.