JD!  Why Yes?

Inception of an Entrepreneurial Journey

JDYES, acronym for Juan Diego Young Entrepreneur Students began fall 2016 as an after school club program that meets weekly on Mondays. Dr. Colosimo, school principal, hand-picked Dave Simpson due to his financial and teaching background along with Sharon Shelkey, business management and proprietor experience as co-leaders to assist the student entrepreneur program. Colosimo urged the group of future leaders to focus on fair trade and its social and economic impact on third world countries.

Fair Trade

Patrick M. Byrne, CEO of Overstock.com has graciously and generously coordinated for JDYES to meet with members of Overstock.com Global Business team. Overstock.com opened their doors to a small group of faculty and student entrepreneur members for a private tour. JDYES team was the first of a guided tour of the brand new Peace Coliseum. Ann Erickson Worldstock, Category Merchant Manager along with administrators was available to answer prepared questions and cover topics the team was interested in learning more about.

JDYES members learn about fair trade and the economic impact of Artisans of the World Fair Trade art pieces and jewelry with the mission to provide artisans with opportunities to lift themselves and their communities out of poverty. JDYES purchased and sold fair trade products to help Artisans of the World poverty chain. These items are handmade and sold nearly at cost for the students to be a part of economic impact while experiencing the buying and selling of products. There is a story behind every art piece and handmade by craftsmen mostly from rural areas working from their homes or small workshops in communities or neighboring villages. In some cases, every family member may be involved in providing their skill in the production process. 


JDYES utilized effective resources of Saint Paul’s Place campus store, managed by Mrs. Shelkey, located at the commons inside Juan Diego Catholic High School. Young entrepreneur students and faculty leaders discussed key ingredients for starting and growing businesses. It did not take long to see the growth potential of the program into a entrepreneur business and trade class. The team knew they had the beginning of something that would grow quickly and by increasing in size and demand they had to be very creative. The book storage room located adjacent to Saint Paul’s Place had the square footage needed. They had to convince Sharon Phelps, librarian, to give up space and relocate. Relocating one space had the domino effect impacting multiple departments and storage locations. Mrs. Phelps astonished everyone with her dedicated team and promptly relocated to benefit the program’s potential growth.

The Spirit Shop

Team members were crucial members in the decision making process of purchasing computer, equipment, and the layout of The Spirit Shop. It was exhilarating, observing student leaders as they gave valuable input utilizing their unique and individual strengths. Team members are still working hard completing the process of growing and building The Spirit Shop. The student store will create personalized name imprinting services, customers will be able to choose from logo design options for custom embroidery and heat press printing on apparel, caps, duffel bags and more. We strive to become an eco-friendly company where possible. We focus on conscious earth-friendly efforts to take necessary precautions to minimize waste.

JDYES Semester Course

The entrepreneur business and trade semester course is available for high school students through an application and acceptance process. Students will be cross-trained and everyone will be a valuable member of the production team. Members will be exposed to all aspects of a trade and retail business. Students will learn apparel buying and reselling, production, inventory management and marketing. Employment opportunities may be available during non-school hours. Responsible and self-motivated students interested in learning a trade, experiencing real-life business, building self-confidence and team morale, while developing marketable skills are encouraged to apply. Senior students are eligible for retail intern class at Saint Paul’s Place campus store.

Mission Statement

Juan Diego Young Entrepreneur Students are members of a business leadership team making crucial decisions for creating and building businesses. Student leaders become knowledgeable of the impact business decisions influence social economy and support sustainability.

Why Yes?

A few good reasons to say yes to JDYES includes; building great business relationships, forming successful entrepreneurial habits, and learning the 3 P’s of marketing.