Summer business programs for high school students
Career Development

National Youth Leadership Forum: Business Innovation – 8 Days to Startup

Now Enrolling for Summer 2016!


Experience NYLF Business Innovation

The National Youth Leadership Forum: Business Innovation – 8 Days to Startup program is specifically designed to provide high school students who attend with the critical business skills that top colleges and employers are seeking.

Through the “8 Days to Startup” curriculum at NYLF Business Innovation, you will explore a variety of business professions and compete in an exciting MBA-style corporate simulation that puts you directly in the board room, and challenges you to make the critical day-to-day decisions of the CEO!

You have your choice of attending the NYLF Business Innovation program at any one of these schools, all of which are ranked among the top ten business schools nationally according to U.S. News & World Report: Stanford University, University of Chicago, or Columbia University.

Take this interactive journey and gain hands-on business experience from the ground up, participate in special site visits to companies that set the standards for success in business today, and discover the insider knowledge and skills you need to chart a lucrative career path!

Activities & Benefits

Take your place among the nation’s highly motivated high school students – those who understand that their future depends on having a foundation of business skills to succeed!

When you attend NYLF Business Innovation, you will:

  • Compete against your peers to run the most successful startup company in an MBA-style corporate simulation, that runs throughout the program.
  • Learn first-hand from accomplished and innovative business professionals such as previous NYLF Business Innovation speakers, Alli Webb, founder of Drybar, a now $50+ million business, or Greg Consiglio, President and COO at Viggle, a pioneering loyalty platform for television, or many more whose success stories will inspire you to pave your own path.
  • Discover the secrets to success in today’s complex world of globally-connected businesses, as you dive into our Business Case Study examining a multi-national corporation.
  • Along with your peers, attend a unique and eye-opening Career Site Visit to one of the nation’s standout corporations driving today’s economy.
  • Enjoy the sights and sounds of the host city you choose such as New York’s Times Square, Chicago’s Magnificent Mile or San Francisco’s Golden Gate Bridge Park.

By completing NYLF Business Innovation, you are eligible for college credit from Loras College.

Business Leadership Styles Discovery
Past Forum Speakers
  • Jim Steeg, M.B.A., Executive Vice President & CEO, San Diego Chargers
  • Dylan Smith, CFO and Co-Founder, Box
  • Greg, Consiglio, President and COO, Viggle
  • Julie Lien, Co-Founder and President, Tumml
  • Michael Chippetta, Market Development Director, Accenture
  • Mike Matousek, Founder and CEO,
  • Ed Rensi, former CEO, McDonald’s
  • Annie Werner, Community Engagement and Content Management, Tumblr
  • Alli Webb, Founder, Drybar

Learn more about the NYLF Business Innovation Speakers.

Business School Students
Your Edge for Success

Is a business career in your future? At NYLF Business Innovation you will:

  • Experience college culture while residing on the campus of a top ranked university for business.
  • Take part in valuable workshops that focus on college success and career skills including interviewing and personal branding.
  • Expand your network of contacts to meet your future academic and career goals.
Lead America Business and Entrepreneurship Summer Programs for High School Students
Interactive Curriculum & Workshops
  • Defining Business in the 21st Century
  • The Entrepreneurial Mindset
  • Business Development and Design
  • Business Ethics in the Digital Age
  • Marketing and Finance
  • Corporate Responsibility & Sustainability
  • Business Markets & Strategy
  • Resource Management
  • Building a Pathway to Success

2016 Summer Dates & Locations

High School Law Program
San Francisco
Stanford University
  • Jun 19 - Jun 26
Summer Business Programs for High School Students - New York City, NY
New York
Columbia University
  • Jul 7 - Jul 14
Summer Business Programs for High School Students - Chicago, IL
The University of Chicago
  • Jul 19 - Jul 26

Tuition & Fundraising


Tuition for NYLF Business Innovation includes a full schedule of classes, briefings, lectures, simulations, a personalized Certificate of Completion, housing accommodations at a university or college dormitory, on-campus meals, course materials, transportation as needed for off-campus activities and meals, program faculty and supervisory staff.

Learn More


Envision offers a limited number of scholarships to qualified students each year based upon financial need, scholastic merit, leadership achievements and other factors.

Apply Now


Many students use fundraising and sponsorships to cover some or all of their tuition costs. Envision has prepared a fundraising guide featuring suggestions and activities to help you raise funds.

Get Started

Frequently Asked Questions

Program Eligibility & Nomination

Is the National Youth Leadership Forum: Business Innovation for me?

This summer business program is for you if you are a high school student interested in exploring all of the various business career options available to you. NYLF Business Innovation is your springboard to achieving tremendous success in college and in a future career in business.

To attend NYLF Business Innovation, you must be in grades 9-12 during the 2015-2016 school year. Many of our students are nominated by educators, leaders from youth organizations and participating institutions, but open enrollments are welcome from qualified high school students who want to make the most of this opportunity.

What happens after I enroll?

After you enroll, you will receive an enrollment confirmation email. A personalized URL will be created for you – your page – where you can find important program updates, the Mandatory Travel Form, the Student Information Form, a travel checklist, pre-conference assignments and a press release you can use to notify local media about your participation in this prestigious program. You will receive notification in the mail and via email with details about how to access your page.

What happens if the program is full? Is there a wait list?

Should the program be full, we will let you know. You will be placed on a wait list and your payment will not be processed. If space becomes available, we will contact you and confirm your interest to attend before proceeding with enrollment.

What is the dress code for this program?

Daily dress code includes solid khaki shorts, skirts, or pants, a solid white or navy blue top and comfortable footwear. A light jacket, sweater, or sweatshirt should be brought in case of cold weather. Ladies must wear dresses, skirts, or slacks (no mini-skirts or denim) with blouses or sweaters (shoulders must be covered at all times). Gentlemen must wear button-down, polo, or collared shirts and slacks (no denim or cargo pants). Comfortable, closed-toe dress shoes are required, as students will be walking a great deal throughout the conference and may spend a considerable amount of time outdoors. Detailed dress code information will be available in the acceptance materials.

For more detailed information about the dress code for this program, visit your personal Web page, which will be available to you after you enroll.

What is the code of conduct for this program?

You are expected to abide by the Student Code of Conduct. You also must abide by and uphold all conference rules. We expect you to conduct yourself as a mature and responsible leader who represents your school and community.

What is the enrollment deadline date?

The deadline date is the date that enrollment closes for NYLF Business Innovation. It is important to note, however, that you enroll on a first-come, first-served basis. Since program space is limited, it is wise to enroll early for this popular summer program.

Organization & Affiliations

Who is Envision?

Envision Experience Envision is a leading experiential education organization dedicated to enabling students of all ages explore their interests and gain critical learning experiences beyond the classroom. Envision merged with LeadAmerica in 2012 to provide a comprehensive offering of programs to help students develop the leadership, scholarship and career skills needed to succeed in the competitive 21st century. See About Envision for more detailed information about Envision, its history of successful educational programs, its leadership and its partners.

All Envision programs are designed to align with Common Core State Standards and other national standards for education. See what others are saying about their Envision program experiences.

How is Envision funded?

Envision is a tuition-based, self-supporting organization, with many students securing financial support from local business, civic, community and leadership organizations. Scholarship funds are also available for qualified nominees. Learn more about scholarships and fundraising opportunities.

Is Envision affiliated with a political party or the U.S. government?

No. Envision is a nonpartisan educational organization.

Tuition & Financial Assistance

What is included in tuition?

Your tuition for NYLF Business Innovation includes a full schedule of classes, briefings, lectures, simulations, a personalized Certificate of Completion, housing accommodations at a university or college dormitory, on-campus meals, course materials, transportation as needed for off-campus activities, supervisory personnel and program faculty.

However, your transportation to and from home and the program location is NOT included in tuition. While attending the program, you will only need money for off-campus meals, souvenirs, snacks and other incidentals.

How do I apply for a scholarship or financial assistance?

You can visit the Envision scholarships page for more information. We are proud to offer a limited number of scholarships to eligible students, opening the door to young leaders from a variety of backgrounds. You should also know that many students fundraise to pay for most or all of their tuition costs. See the fundraising page for more information.

What happens if there are no spaces available by the time I am able to accrue the full tuition amount by fundraising?

If you intend to fundraise to raise program tuition, we encourage you to enroll using our convenient payment plan. That way you will make sure you have safely secured your space in the program. It is always a good idea to contact our Office of Admissions once you begin your fundraising campaign

How will I be notified about my scholarship application?

You can expect to be notified by email. This usually happens about two weeks after the scholarship deadline date has passed. If you do not provide an operable email address, you will receive notification by mail approximately three weeks after the scholarship deadline date has passed. The scholarship deadline date can be found on the scholarships page.

Safety & Supervision

How will I be supervised?

Your safety and well-being during the program is our highest priority. The program is structured so that you will reside in a safe, controlled environment. You will be closely supervised by professionally trained staff, including faculty advisors who serve as educational facilitators and chaperones, security personnel, operations personnel and a program coordinator.

For nearly 30 years, Envision has achieved a stellar record of safely and successfully enriching the lives of students, providing them with superb educational experiences and professional supervision. Other Envision safety measures include:

  • Greeting students at the designated airport upon their arrival and providing shuttle service directly to the program site, as well as providing shuttle service back to the airport on departure day.
  • Maintaining a student-to-staff ratio of 17-to-1.
  • Providing single-sex rooms and single-sex floors.
  • Requiring all students to attend all activities.
  • Checking rooms nightly and ensuring that students remain in their rooms.
  • Having night monitors in place to support students who may become ill or who have an emergency during the night.
  • Equipping all staff members with two-way communication devices.

Travel & Accommodations

Where will I stay?

For the summer 2016 NYLF Business Innovation sessions, you have the choice of three exciting campus locations, including Stanford University in Palo Alto, CA, University of Chicago in Chicago, IL, or Columbia University in New York, NY. In each location, you will reside on campus during the program.


How many students share a room?

Each room will house two to three students. You will have your own bed.

Can I request a roommate?

Roommate requests are not accepted. You will be randomly assigned a room prior to your arrival day. We believe that one of the important benefits of this program is the opportunity for you to network with others and get to know peers from different parts of the country.

Can my parents attend the program?

No. Your parents or guardians are not allowed to accompany you during the program. Gaining independence, including experiencing new things on your own, is an essential part of your growth during the program. However, it is perfectly fine for your family to travel with you to the program location and stay in the area while you are attending the program.

Can I attend if I am a student with special needs?

Yes. If you are a student with special needs or with disabilities, we encourage you to enroll. We may be able to provide you with auxiliary aids and services to assist you. Please call our Office of Admissions for more information or to discuss your particular needs prior to enrolling in the program.

Do I need to make my own flight arrangements?

Yes. Your tuition does not include transportation to and from your home and the program location. We recommend that you make necessary flight arrangements only AFTER you receive confirmation that you are officially enrolled.

Who will meet me at the airport?

Envision staff will be at the designated airports to assist you with your arrival and departure. We will also ensure there is shuttle service for you to get you from designated airports to program sites one the first and last days of your program. The shuttle service fee is $35 each way or $70 round-trip. 

Note: More details about the designated airport, arrival windows and the airport shuttle service will be provided to you on your personal Web page after you enroll in the program.

What is the Tuition and Travel Protection Plan?

To protect and safeguard the investment that you and your parents make in travel and tuition costs, we strongly recommend that your parents take advantage of our Tuition and Travel Protection Plan. This plan is offered through Nationwide Mutual Insurance Company. You may purchase this cancellation insurance when you enroll. You may also select this option when you complete the Mandatory Travel Form on your personalized page after enrollment. If your parents would like more specifics about the Tuition and Travel Protection Plan, please have them call the plan administrator, Nationwide, at (866) 282-3987.

Academic Preparation

What is the pre-conference assignment, FUEL?

The first step of your leadership journey includes assessing your strengths and opportunities for growth. To aid in this assessment, you must complete a brief pre-program assignment entitled Feedback for Understanding Emerging Leaders (FUEL).

The FUEL assignment will be available on your personal web page after you enroll. It simply requires that you choose five mentors – teachers, coaches, youth group leaders or other trusted adults – to complete a short survey about your leadership strengths. You also will complete a short self-assessment as part of the FUEL assignment.

When is the deadline to submit my FUEL form? Is the assignment mandatory?

Please make sure you complete the assignment no later than one week prior to arrival. You will be able to see the results on the first day of the program. 
The FUEL assignment will be available on your child’s personal Web page after you enroll.

Other Questions

Can special dietary needs be met?

Vegetarian options are always available. Kosher and Halal meals can be made available to you, provided the request is submitted prior to the start of the conference. When you complete the Student Information Form, you will have the opportunity to make special dietary requests.

What if I lose something or forget to bring a personal item home after the program?

All lost and found items are retained by the program staff for two weeks following the conference. Items of higher monetary value are retained for 30 days. After 30 days, all items remaining are discarded or donated. Contact the Office of Admissions for assistance.

My question is not listed.

If you have additional questions, please contact the Office of Admissions.