Creating the required financial statements to be included in a business plan can be a daunting task for any entrepreneur hoping to obtain financial backing for a great business idea.

Creating the required financial statements to be included in a business plan can be a daunting task for any entrepreneur hoping to obtain financial backing for a great business idea.

Students in the Entrepreneurship and Management class at UAHS face that task - after navigating the financial terminology, components, and purposes of cash flow statements, income statements, and balance sheets. Only then can they begin to create pro forma financial statements to be presented to a panel of "loan officers" judging the viability of each of the new businesses.

Enter volunteers from the Economic and Community Development Institute (ECDI). After requesting one guest speaker to help address the challenges the students in the class were facing, Sheldon Bartel, VP of Lending at ECDI, magnanimously provided four volunteers to work with the four teams.

Alex Beres, Abdi Gole, Ellen Harvey, and Catherine Zupan arrived on Nov. 9 and hit the ground running. Each volunteer began working with a team, assessing how much work had been completed and how much still needed to be done. They left having exchanged email addresses and assigning tasks to be completed before their next visit on Nov. 16.

The teams were enthusiastic in their responses to their mentors. The Patty Wagon team stated "Catherine was friendly and informative. She helped us get on the right track." The UA Sports team said they were unaware of how much money it took to start and run a business and "Abdi helped us through the start-up and cash flow parts of our business plan."

The rec center team felt "Alex provided us with strategies for calculating the mortgage and finding the best location for our business."

"Ellen's enthusiastic energy really motivated us to get serious" reported Suburban Outfitters.

The teams were to with their Upper Arlington Chamber of Commerce mentors on Tuesday, Nov. 23.