MBA Research
Not-for-profit, research-based support for all Business Administration educators: entrepreneurship, finance, hospitality, management/administration, and marketing.

High School of Business

Learn how college business students at Bowling Green State University capitalize on the college credits and accelerated courses available through MBA Research's High School of Business™ program.

Did you know that more high school grads major in business than any other college major?  Through High School of Business™, students work to solve real business projects and problems, much as they will in college and at work.  Its challenging work, but the hands-on creativity required to complete the projects makes it fun, too. 

How does it work?  Browse the info below to learn more about the program's key components, including rigorous, standards-based curriculum, high-level professional development, and a local steering team strategy. Then contact us for more information about how your high school can put this rigorous program in place.


High School of Business™ Overview & Statistics
Click image below to download brochure.

"MBA Research has given us the tools to transform Eastern High School’s business program" --Jodi Adams, High School of Business teacher, Eastern High School, Louisville, KY
"My first college economics course is in a lecture hall that holds hundreds. As the professor began to talk on the first day, my fellow students frantically wrote down every word. Not me. I’d already learned it in High School of Business." --Josh Dardick, Student
The Ohio State University
"Students completing this program can earn up to six credit hours of college credit which helps move them along their way to a degree. This program is quite unique, and we are looking forward to working with the High School of Business in this endeavor."
--Dr. John Hoag, Acting Interim Dean, College of Business, Bowling Green State University
"We are able to deliver a high level of business curriculum in a project-based environment, implementing "reasoning" level of understanding. Students are able to not only learn vocabulary and new concepts but use what they have learned to solve problems."
--West Career & Tech Academy, Las Vegas
"Our students read and write about non-fiction in every course. It’s a natural connection with the Common Core."
--Helen Redmond, High School of Business, LEAP Academy (NJ)
"In history class the teacher tells us what to do.  In Leadership we tell Ms. Nockengost what we’re planning to do." --Tim Ellison, Grade 9, Ellet High School

High School of Business™ is designed much like a college business administration program. Students take approximately one course per semester, beginning with an introduction to business.  The program continues with courses in various business functions concluding with the capstone course, Business Strategies, that requires implementation of the principles addressed throughout the High School of Business™ program.  Click here for more about High School of Business™.

Basic steps to implement a High School of Business™ program at your school.

  1. Get familiar with the program. Read through the High School of Business™ Handbook to learn about policies and procedures.
  2. Contact MBA Research. Discuss your questions and inform staff of your school’s interest.
  3. Select a Primary Contact. He/she is the main point of contact between MBA Research and the school district, and is responsible for maintaining the accuracy of contact information as well as program implementation.
  4. Identify appropriate teachers. Select teachers who are excited to teach a project-based learning curriculum, as well as the program’s accelerated content.
  5. Request an application. Contact Lisa Berkey at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. .
  6. Review the application form. Involve your superintendent, principal, and other administrators to make sure all parties are fully aware of district and school responsibilities. After the authorized signatures have been obtained, mail the original signed document and $1,000 application fee to MBA Research. The deadline to return the agreement is December 1. Under special circumstances, late applications are accepted. Contact us to discuss if your school is unable to meet the deadline.
  7. Schedule an application conference call. MBA Research will email the Primary Contact to schedule a one-hour application conference call. The purpose of the call is to determine if faculty and staff at the school have plans in place that adhere to the program guidelines outlined on the application form. Call participants include (at minimum) district and site administrators, teachers, and a counselor.
  8. Receive status notification. All applicants will be contacted within ten days of completing the application conference call. 

Note: To ensure a thoughtful expansion of the program, MBA Research limits the number of schools accepted into the High School of Business™ program each year.  For more information, contact Lisa Berkey: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. .  Stay connected with MBA Research and the High School of Business™ program through our Perspectives e-newsletter and Facebook.

What Happens Next?

As your school considers joining High School of Business™, keep these next steps in mind.

Steering Team

"Students need to understand that they must be able to think their way through problems,  because in a lot of cases there is no 'stock' or 'book' answer. This is a very important aspect to so many day-to-day issues.” – High School of Business Steering Team Member

Consider who you will invite to join your school’s High School of Business™ Steering Team. Keep in mind this is an active group that is responsible for the successful planning, start-up, maintenance, and continuous improvement of the program.

The Steering Team will be composed of the:

  • Faculty teaching High School of Business™ core courses
  • Site Administrator
  • Two upper-level local business professionals
  • District Administrator
  • Counselor
  • College-level business faculty member


Steering Team’s Responsibilities:

  • Implement six core courses in a three-year period to provide students the opportunity to finish program prior to graduation
  • Publicize High School of Business™ program to students and parents in a timely manner to permit them to consider High School of Business™ courses as they plan their high school course of study
  • Conduct annual program self-assessment and compose resulting objectives for upcoming school year
  • Commit to continuous improvement

MBA Research will provide an Implementation Plan to each school site.

Professional Development

Participating teachers register for upcoming High School of Business™ Training Institute. More information about training is available in the Site Support section.

MBA Research welcomes three schools to the High School of Business™ program

Firestone High School in Akron, Ohio, Longmont High School in Longmont, Colorado, and Camdenton High School in Camdenton, Missouri.

High School of Business™ Students Experience Vertical Integration

Taking advantage of national manufacturing month, the HSB Marketing and Management classes at Columbus Grove High School in Ohio toured the Ottawa Whirlpool Facility last month.  The students experienced the integral role that robotics plays in the manufacturing process at Whirlpool and learned about “vertical integration,” the cost-saving process of making all parts in house.

HSB teacher Howard Foltz focuses on building business relationships in the community and capitalizes on the experiential learning that is such a big part of High School of Business. The plant hosts HSB interns and hires college students during the summer.

HSB Principles of Management students, Columbus Grove High School, Ohio

Diverse Group of Educators Share Perspectives on High School of Business™

“A text at 1am this past June woke me with the exciting news that High School of Business students at Rock Canyon High in Colorado has placed first at FBLA Nationals. I hear exciting stories about students regularly from program participants. It’s one of my favorite parts of the job,” said High School of Business Program Director, Lisa Berkey.  This anecdote kicked off the 2015 High School of Business Luncheon in October during MBA Research’s annual Conclave Curriculum and Teaching Conference. Berkey then introduced six educators who shared their experiences with the program. Excerpts: 

  • “At Bowling Green, student retention is one of our goals. We know that HSB students know business, which greatly increases the likelihood that they will complete their degrees.”  -- Susan Kosakowski, Bowling Green State University
  • “HSB students are majoring in business and marketing. Partnerships with two and four-year colleges will continue to grow in Colorado.”  --Laurie Urich, Colorado Community College System
  • “High School of Business has a  positive ROI—it is an investment in students, of course, but it’s also an investment in teachers.”  -Snehal Bhakta, Clark County School, NV
  • “HSB students raise the bar for other students in other classes around the school.” – Jodi Adams, Eastern High, KY
  • "At the national level, the HSB National Advisory Council is expanding partnerships for the benefit of students.” –Diane Hegeman, Ph.D., Arapahoe Community College, CO

Sue Kosakowski, Bowling Green State University; Laurie Urich, Colorado Community College System; Snehal Bhakta, Clark Co.
School District (NV); Jodi Adams, Eastern High (KY); Sheryl Okash, Bellevue University; Diane Hegeman, Ph.D., Arapahoe
Community College; Lisa Berkey, MBA Research & Curriculum Center

Ahead of the Curve: High School of Business™ Student Enters College with 18 Credit Hours

Christian Stechschulte, a 2015 Columbus Grove High School graduate now majoring in Finance at Bowling Green State University, explained how the High School of Business™ program eased his transition to college with things like earning 18 college credits toward his major at BGSU. This includes a combination of hours he received directly from BGSU and transfer credits received from a local bi-lateral agreement. Additionally, he says the BGSU faculty greatly appreciate HSB students because they come in with applicable skills in technology, as well as strong independent and group work habits, positioning them ahead of the curve as they start college.


Local MBA High School of Business™ students continue to impress!  Take a minute to check out this Missouri television station's feature on the St. Joseph School District's Cool Biz entrepreneurship camp.  TV Video

High School of Business™ announces top-scoring students in nation

Congratulations! MBA Research proudly recognizes High School of Business™ students with the highest exam scores in the nation. Click here for the complete list.

Business as Usual? Not quite.

Students at the Academy of Arts, Careers, and Technology in Reno, Nevada, kicked off High School of Business with a weekend retreat designed to instill teamwork and collaboration skills. Back in the classroom, they immediately put skills into practice as they work on real business projects. Next out-of-the classroom learning experience: the Federal Reserve and San Francisco Giants marketing department. 

College Credit Options With National Partners

MBA Research is pleased to offer college credit opportunities through national affiliations. In addition, schools are encouraged to work with local post-secondary partners to explore credit opportunities. Most schools that participate in the High School of Business™ program have at least one established local college credit agreement.

  University   Credits Available   Location   Details
  Bowling Green State University   Up to 6   Bowling Green, OH   BGSU details
  Bellevue University   Up to 6   Omaha, NE, or online   BU details
  Press release


Encourage Students to Share Their Stories About Your Program

Last month, Program Director Lisa Berkey had the privilege of listening to High School of Business™ students from Harrison High in Cincinnati explain the program's benefits to a teacher from Michigan. Their teacher, Trevor Ward, commented that he rarely tells others about his program. His students speak from their perspective, and in the process practice communications and networking skills. Be sure your students are getting the same experience by encouraging them to discuss what they've learned in your courses.

High School of Business™ students explain the program's impact

DECA's International Conference

At DECA's International Conference, MBA Research staff had the privilege of meeting students like these who have excelled in their courses. We're very proud to be a part of helping students succeed. We believe that project-based learning is an important part of that. If you'd like to test drive a project from the High School of Business™ program, simply This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. a request.

High School of Business™ students at Leipsic High get ready to attend The Hatch,
an entrepreneurship competition at Bowling Green State University.

Post-Secondary Perks

Students can benefit in many ways from partnerships between secondary and post-secondary. College credit options are certainly paramount, but don't let your relationships end there. Case-in-point: The Hatch, a Shark Tank-style entrepreneurship competition at Bowling Green State University. BGSU encourages high schools to join in the fun (and the learning) via ready-to-use entrepreneurship curriculum and invitations to attend the event in-person or via a live feed.
The Hatch welcomes any high school to participate. Find out more here. MBA Research is proud to team up with BGSU to make college credit, experiences like The Hatch, and other benefits available to students participating in the High School of Business program.

Why we support High School of Business

There are lots of reasons why the High School of Business™ is changing the way schools think about business and marketing education.  Here's a personal story featured in Bowling Green State University's College of Business Newsletter.

Let the Numbers Prove the Value of Business Administration Programs

The word "data" has become the latest education catch-phrase. Hear me out...this is a GOOD thing for business administration educators. Consider this: if your school decided it could keep only one career tech program for college-bound students, business administration should be that program. Business administration continues to be the most popular college major, the most-conferred bachelor's degree, and the third-most conferred associate's degree. Translation: more college-bound students in your school can benefit from business administration courses than from any other career tech program. For the details behind these statistics, see page two of this brochure.

Ongoing, Focused Professional Development

Teacher training shouldn't stop after one session. MBA Research is committed to offering ongoing professional development opportunities to teachers in the High School of Business™ program. This includes services offered internally, such as monthly course-focused web conferences, advanced in-person training options, coordination of veteran-teacher-led webinars, as well as notification of related learning available through other organizations. One of these is the Buck Institute for Education's Google Hang-Out sessions. The current topic is Student Self-Management Via PBL. These free 30-minute hangouts are open to the public. Can't attend live? The recorded sessions are posted afterward.

Teachers experience project-based learning in teams during training.

High School of Business™ certificate of completion

Yay for You!

It's time to celebrate! Don't underestimate the importance of recognizing your students' achievements. Whether or not your school currently offers High School of Business™, here are some celebratory ideas from HSB schools.

  • Scholarships for program completers. Consider local colleges and universities, alumni groups, and business organizations as potential benefactors of your students' college education.
  • Trips. These can be a big deal (think New York Stock Exchange) or local (High School of Business™ Day at a local college or business). All trips have the powerful combination of being educational and fun.
  • Ceremonies. Recognize students at your school's existing awards ceremony or create your own. Consider asking your local Chamber of Commerce or a business to sponsor a business luncheon or dinner.
  • Graduation Cords. High School of Business™ students at a Colorado high school wear these at graduation.
  • Certificates. Don't underestimate the power of a certificate. Students who complete High School of Business™ receive these, complete with a gold star.
  • Press. Whatever you do, be sure pictures and a story make their way to your local media.

Students visit the New York Stock Exchange as part of Columbus Grove
High School's High School of Business™ program.

Welcome, New Schools!

MBA Research is pleased to welcome 16 additional schools to the program.

High School of Business™ National Advisory Council Member Recognized

MBA Research is pleased to recognize Heather Cracraft for her work on the High School of Business Advisory Council. Heather was recently featured in her local newspaper for her good works in Superior, Colorado, as well as nationally through her service on the HSB Advisory Council. Thanks, Heather, for your leadership!

High School of Business™ Students Excel at University of Northern Colorado Competition

Read more.

Mentoring, Networking on Menu at Lunch & Learn Events

Are your students making valuable connections with the local business community? Snehal Bhakta, Teacher at West CTA in Las Vegas, heads up the school's Lunch & Learn Series. Here's his description of the monthly event:
"West CTA's Lunch & Learn Series gives students the opportunity to showcase projects and network with business leaders and community partners in a roundtable setting that promotes discussion. Following introductions of all in attendance, the event begins with small groups of students and business leaders seated at round tables where they discuss the projects students have brought to demonstrate and receive feedback. The groups have five minutes before the business leaders rotate to at least 2 other tables. Next, lunch is served and the students have the opportunity to practice their communication skills in a lunch networking environment as well as continue any conversations that were left unfinished. Final remarks and an invitation to the next month's event wrap-up the gathering."

Snehal Bhakta, High School of Business™ Teacher at West CTA in Las Vegas,
snaps a selfie at one of the school's Lunch & Learn Events.

High School of Business™ students raise $2451 for Challenged Champions Equestrian Center

Read more.


Internships and Business Curriculum Lead to Bright Future

Read more.

High School of Business™ students teach financial literacy to 8th graders during Career Fair

Read more.

Can Snacking Teach Economics? Ask a High School of Business™ Student. Read more.

High School of Business™ students at Monarch High in Colorado are now eligible for 21 dual credits through Front Range Community College. Kudos to teacher Rudy Sumpter for his hard work in making this possible.

The Skinny on Project-Based Learning. In her blog, Suzie Boss does a terrific job explaining away the concerns we hear regularly regarding the use of project-based learning. Her research-backed comments about the following persistent myths are worth a read.

  • "Projects may be fun, but they'll never prepare students for ____ [fill in high-stakes test of your choice]"
  • "If kids work in teams on projects, one or two will do all the work and the others will coast"
  • "PBL won't work with my students because they are ____ [fill in the challenge of your choice]"
  • "I'll never have time to cover all my content if I spend time on projects"
  • "Projects just aren't rigorous".


High School of Business students receive BetterInvesting accounts. MBA Research is pleased to partner with BetterInvesting, a nonprofit organization "providing a program of sound investment education, information, tools and support that helps create successful lifetime investors". Students participating in High School of Business nationwide will receive BetterInvesting accounts, providing access to tools used for stock selection and to manage stock portfolios as part of the Principles of Finance course. Visit to learn more about services designed to educate and support individual investors.

Urban Meets Rural: Making the most of technology in small rural schools. If you're using projects in the classroom, you know they have the ability to impact students like no other pedagogy. You also know that they require frequent communication with business professionals. The coordination of that communication can be difficult in any school, but is especially challenging in rural areas with few local businesses. Enter technology at its best. At Colorado's Monarch High School, located in close proximity to both Denver and Boulder, teacher Rudy Sumpter has a wide pool of businesses within reach. As local guest speakers visit his classroom, he uses Vidyo to record and share their presentations. As part of MBA Research's High School of Business™ program, the teachers are using the same project-based curriculum. Says Tammy Fehringer, coordinator of a group of rural schools (Northeast Colorado BOCES): "This system is going to be so helpful for our kids!  We can share speakers and even conduct classes together."

Students work with Chamber of Commerce to Bring Business to Colorado. Read more.

Teacher Therapy. You know how it feels to talk through a problem. Even if you don't find a miracle answer, chances are you feel better and have some direction after getting things off your chest. The same is true for collaborating with other teachers. If you have a team of business or marketing teachers that you collaborate with regularly, count yourself lucky. Many schools have departments of one or two, rendering those discussions impossible internally. Don't let that stop you. Find a group of business or marketing ed teachers and take advantage of the Internet to talk regularly. Here at MBA Research, we use, email, and to foster communication between teachers participating in the High School of Business™ program. And we were thrilled when one of the teachers set up a Twitter group for teachers of the program. Don't know other business and marketing teachers? Make an effort to connect at state and national conferences (such as MBA's upcoming Conclave). And be sure you have a LinkedIn account. Use the site to form a group or to search for new contacts. And, yes, all this takes time. But the pay-off is worth it.

Our biggest assets? Teachers! MBA Research staff spent two days updating curriculum with guidance from High School of Business teaching veterans Howard Foltz, Justin Servis, and Yvette Schroeder. Thanks to all for sharing your expertise.

Students Build Project Management Skills in a Lucrative Field. Quick--jot down all the steps needed to manage a 5k race. You know--marketing, registration, route mapping, health and safety, prizes, timing chips, etc. It's a lot to handle for anyone. Just ask high school senior Larkin Quintero, who successfully managed a race last year as part of his school's High School of Business™ program. Serving as project manager, he used Project Management Institute (PMI) processes and tools to manage the race from initiation to work-breakdown structure to project close. In fact, all of the students in his Principles of Management course served as project managers of their own complex projects.

Principles of Management is the fifth of six courses in the High School of Business™ program. All courses utilize project-based learning to engage students in learning content via real, hands-on projects. 9th and 10th graders begin by using a simple 3-column project plan grid to map out each team-based project in their courses. As juniors, students are ready to serve as project managers, following PMI processes to manage their own in-depth projects such as the 5k Quintero led.

As students from high schools across the country complete High School of Business™ and head for college and the workforce, their project management skills will reap benefits for them. We know it, business leaders know it, and, importantly, the students themselves know it. Of those who completed the program in 2012, 97% believe the program "increased their chance to succeed in a future career" and 87% believe it will enable them to succeed in college.

High School of Business Alum Excels. Recent Eastern High School graduate Joe Kline has been granted direct admission into The Ohio State University’s Fisher College of Business and the Business Honors Learning Community. The Louisville, Kentucky, student was a stand-out in High School of Business™, receiving top honors on the Principles of Finance and Principles of Business national exams. Congratulations to Joe and his teachers at Eastern High School: Will Morgan, Kim Buford, Jody Charleston, and Jodi Adams.

Scholarships for High School of Business™ Students. MBA Research is pleased to recognize The Club at Key Center, Cleveland’s premier business club, for support of High School of Business™ students. Throughout the school year, Club members provide counsel as part of the local steering team at Jane Addams Business Careers Center. And now they have awarded scholarships of $750, $500, and $500 to three recent graduates of the program. The three recipients will attend Kent State University, University of Toledo, and Cleveland State.


Stock Market Game Regional Winners. High School of Business™ students from Eastern High School comprised five top-ten teams at the regional Stock Market Game competition in Kentucky. Pictured here are 1st place winners along with their teacher, Kimberly Buford. Congratulations!


New Mexico's Capital High School celebrated 20 students advancing to DECA International Competition this spring. Teacher Ray Henderson attributes some of that success to the school's switch to the High School of Business™ curriculum. Thanks, Ray, but we know the real credit belongs to your students and hardworking teachers like you.


Summer Inspiration: project-based learning. Buck Institute for Education has free videos, online training, and more.

Great 3-minute look inside St. Joseph’s High School of Business program. Teamwork, business connections, college options, and student perspective.


High School of Business Students Win Colorado’s National Economics Challenge. MBA Research congratulates Monarch High School 9th graders Harris Dietz, Jack Ferry, Andrew Leblanc, and Grant Saunders. Best of luck to them and their teacher, Rudy Sumpter, as they advance to national competition.

St. Joseph School District celebrates High School of Business graduates. Scholarships, college credit, pomp & circumstance.  Click here for details.

Teachers Collaborate at University of Colorado.  High School of Business™ teachers and counselors met at the University of Colorado recently for a day of professional development. In addition to focusing on curriculum, the group learned about CU from the Associate Dean of Leeds School of Business as well as the Director of Admissions. Dr. Al Smith commended the teachers for pushing the level of business administration knowledge taught in high schools. He also shared plans for project-based learning courses the school will soon introduce. Other topics included a new webinar series developed by Scholars students at CU-Leeds School of Business, opportunities to integrate Junior Achievement resources into courses, teaching strategies from veteran teachers, and collaboration on courses and administrative activities, such as steering team management and business community connections.

New Webinar on Negotiating Skills.  Students in the High School of Business™ program across the nation are "hanging out" with business leaders. Guest speakers are nothing new in classrooms, but technology - such as Google Hangouts - enables speakers to reach a much larger audience. Such was the case when Patrick Riley, Executive Director of the Global Accelerator Network, spoke on the topic of negotiating. Mr. Riley used his experience working with tech start-up companies to share tactics for being a strong negotiator. And he understood his audience by sharing how the same strategies can be used when negotiating with parents. Thanks to students in the Leeds Scholars Program at the University of Colorado for managing the webinar series. Consider sharing Mr. Riley's recorded 17-minute Hangout with your students.

Take a look inside the High School of Business program at Eastern High School in Louisville, Kentucky. The school created this video to explain the program to incoming students, parents, and the business community.  Well done!

MBA Research welcomes Greeley West High School in Greeley, Colorado, to the High School of Business™ program!

Students create valuable resource. At Leipsic High in Ohio, students in the High School of Business™ Leadership course have created a suicide prevention and survivor's guide video. The very personal and information piece features interviews with two students personally affected by suicide. It is being shared on SchoolTube and via our resources here at MBA Research. Words can't express the pride we feel for these students and their teacher, Yvette Schroeder. Please share the video as you see fit.

Thanks to High School of Business™ National Advisory Council and Others.  Like any successful venture, High School of Business™ has benefitted from the input of many as it has grown. MBA Research appreciates the advice and feedback we've received from post-secondary and secondary faculty and administrators, state departments of education, business professionals, and the fabulous cadre of High School of Business Teachers. We continue to improve the program and reach more students with the guidance of the High School of Business™ National Advisory Council. Thanks for your support!

MBA Research welcomes four schools to the High School of Business™ program: Kuna High School (Kuna, ID), Colerain High School/Butler Tech (Cincinnati, OH), Bullitt East High School (Mt. Washington, KY), and Eagle Valley High School (Gypsum, CO).

High School of Business™ students visit Northeastern Junior College campus.  Think fast! Students tackle business dilemmas during college visit.  Details.

Peek inside a High School of Business™ classroom. Hear from teachers and see students at work in this new video from GlenOak High in Canton, Ohio.

High School of Business™ students assist local Red Cross. “Must adapt to change.” Reads like most job postings, right? High School of Business™ students in northeastern Colorado practiced adaptability while working on a service-learning project in their Leadership class. The students had planned to gather supplies for flood victims, but ran into a “good” problem—the Red Cross had already assisted the victims. The students quickly refocused on disaster preparedness. They collected comfort items for children (e.g., blankets, teddy bears) through their five schools-- Holyoke, Haxtun, Merino, Julesburg, and Peetz.

Through projects like this, students master learning outcomes and gain real experience using 21st Century Skills. Every High School of Business™ course includes between one and seven projects. Learn more about the program’s pedagogical philosophy here.

Name Position Email Phone
Lisa Berkey Director, High School of Business™ This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. 800-448-0398 ext. 222
Stephanie King Administrative Associate, High School of Business This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. 800-448-0398 ext. 221


MBA Research
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PO Box 12279
Columbus, OH 43212

Fax: 614-486-1819

In this section you will find key resources and information needed to successfully implement and sustain your High School of Business™ program.  Click here for the Site Support section.