Small Business

Miami-Dade students honored in business plan contest

Eric Mund, a sophomore at John A. Ferguson Senior High, won first place in the first annual South Florida Youth Business Plan Competition held last week.

More than 2,500 students from 24 Miami-Dade high schools participated in the contest organized by the National Foundation for Teaching Entrepreneurship and sponsored by Merrill Lynch.

Mund's plan was Digital Video Xpress, a company that would help customers turn aging and ''ancient'' home videos and photographs into slick DVD presentations. Mund beat out five other finalists to win $1,500 and the chance to compete for a $10,000 national prize in October.

''My parents can't believe I did this,'' said Mund, 15. ``I'm not even in the business program at school.''

Second place went to Cassandra Collazo, Tiffany Fuentes, Dalila Flores and Jennifer Montano from Turner Technical Arts Senior High for their company, Les Dames de Chocolat, which makes chocolate-dipped strawberries and other treats; third place went to Farida Wazidali of North Miami Beach Senior High for GT Ownz, a website design and marketing company.

The other finalists were Leavonne Jetter of South Dade Senior High for Lili's Cartoon Cakes -- which makes cakes in the shape of cartoon characters; and Richard Smith of Southridge Senior High for L.C. Action, a sports photography company.