ICS Stories

<img src="workshop.png" alt="ICS High School teacher talking to students at a workshop">

If you’ve been at ICS for over a year you might be familiar with the annual Entrepreneurship Workshop that is co-hosted by the IB Business Year 1 students and the CCC Student Service Club. The purpose of the workshop is to inspire trade ideas and skills for young Ethiopians ranging from 16 to 25 who face challenges gaining employment. The participants are connected to various organizations working with orphans and vulnerable children, including the CCC Children's Home, Sele Enat, AHope for Children, and Selamta Children's Project. Led by IB students and overseen by HS teacher Nathan Haines, the workshops involve working sessions and guest speaker sessions with business owners and entrepreneurs who share their own experiences and advice.

The Entrepreneurship Workshop could not take place in person this year due to the ongoing pandemic so the IB students decided to create a website to put together a virtual event.

The students began designing the website in early February and underwent a rigorous process of recruiting new members, producing videos and workbooks, and translating the content into Amharic. The decision was made to host the event asynchronously online, allowing participants with low internet bandwidth to easily access the resources online and visit at any point in time. The students also loaded the resources onto a flash drive for those who do not have access to the internet.

Due to school going online, there was a significant delay in getting the website live and ultimately took the students five months to complete. The website is now live and it was the dedication of four service club leaders who continued to meet regularly and put in extra work to ensure the work got done: Ruth, Wongelawit, Yohanna, and Blen.

The website's effectiveness will be measured based on the number of participants who are inspired to establish and develop their own business as a result of the workshop. Mr. Haines will remain in contact with the orphanage often to make sure the participants have had access to the website.

“It really was a rewarding experience working on the CCC Business Workshop Website. I really hope the website helps young adults start and run their own businesses successfully!” - Ruth, IB student

“I just want to give a big shout-out to Mr. Haines and Ruth! They put so much time and effort into the website, this wouldn't have been possible without them!” - Yohanna, IB student

“This service group is more than just teaching theoretical business content, it's more about equipping the students with the information they need to become independent and self-sufficient entrepreneurs. And the fruitful results have been seen by the students who have already established their own businesses.” - Blen, IB student

“I want to give a big shout-out to the IB Business Year 1 students who put together the workshop videos and practice resources. Though it wasn't the same as doing the weekend workshop in person, this is a remarkable piece of work and, because of its permanent nature on the web, has its own unique benefit. Finally, I think that Ruth Gemechu deserves a special mention. The website is largely her baby. She put a ton of work, as the chairperson for the service club, into coordinating the work, overseeing the work, doing the layout of the website, and doing a significant amount of the translation work herself. We would not have completed this without her efforts.” - Nathan Haines, HS teacher

The Entrepreneurship Workshop is part of the ICS service-learning program, a program in which students identify problems within the local communities and come up with solutions. Besides the benefits of the workshop to the participants, students agree they benefit significantly from the project.

You can visit the website HERE.


For more information about the ICS Service Learning Program, please contact the HS Service Learning Coordinator at

ICS in the News

Recent articles and blogs about and by ICS:

  • Dr. Tim’s Interview with Tom Vander Ark on PLCs HERE
  • ICS Addis Hosts Africa’s First Professional Learning Community at Work Institute, HERE
  • Making Personalization Work: Transferring Agency from Superheroes to Students, HERE
  • Wild and Thoughtful Innovation, HERE