Luca Pistor, is taking his Junior Social Entrepreneurship Summit program to the international level by adding new oversea locations.

The local 16-year-old founded JSES in 2010, and the program is a student created, university sponsored weeklong summer camp for children 11 – 17 years of age who are interested in entrepreneurship and building a business to help create a sustainable earth.

“I was 10 years old, and in third grade I was asked to create a passion project of something that meant a great deal to me. A think – tank for kids, where we could bring our ideas together and work on them, was my project, “ said Pistor.

Pistor made a family trip to Europe and attended school in Berlin. He found that Berlin and Santa Monica were pretty similar.

“Santa Monica and Berlin are both known as entrepreneurial tech start up cities, and are both environmentally conscious,” said Pistor.

Throughout the program students work in teams and are paired with project mentors where they create a business plan, learn an elevator pitch and bring their ideas into the marketplace.

In 2013 he decided it was time for the program to take its first steps and go international. He directed JSES Berlin with kids from Berlin, Santa Monica and Mumbai. Not long after he met with USC professors who agreed to sponsor JSES, which helped JSES continue to be an international program.

The program has traveled internationally for the last five years and Santa Monica youth has brought their ideas to the Annenberg Community Beach House and USC where they have learned to deepen their ideas and projects. Pistor decided it was time to visit new areas and their next mission would be to take on the Pacific Rim, which included locations like Xi’an, Samoa, and Fiji.

Pistor explains much of the work done overseas is created in Santa Monica.

A Santa Monica book drive by PS1 and other Santa Monica students gathered hundreds of book titles that were delivered to school libraries and students in Fiji and Samoa.

“Our main site visit in Samoa was in Apia, at the Women in Samoa Development, an NGO that coordinates the efforts of local farmers, village crafters, and businesses. We discussed how we could partner to promote their NGO’s collective of goods and services,” said Pistor. “We pitched an idea of using their natural resources and U.S. style marketing, which we are now developing together with them.”

At 16 years old, Pistor has accomplished a significant amount of work, but he emphasizes he wants nothing but success for his peers. He said, “Our mission for JSES is to continue to offer social entrepreneurship education until schools have their own in house program.”

He has been developing in school programs for SMMUSD schools on a pilot basis and continues to compile with many other local students who attend Crossroads School, PS1, Canyon Elementary and other independent schools.

“JSES benefits the city by encouraging local students to share and invest their ideas into helping our community grow, in terms of becoming more unified and in being more invested in sustainability,” said Pistor.

Pistor explains the Pacific Rim tour will continue as they add more schools from Japan, China and along the Pacific Northwest and encourages students to look into the program. Their 5th Annual JSES Berlin begins August 7.

He said, “The JSES provides a platform for student creativity to flourish.”

For more information you can visit http://www.jsesinternational.com/ .

marina@smdp.com

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