ALBANY, N.Y. -- Students returned Tuesday to the classrooms of Green Tech High Charter School in Albany. There are your typical classes of Math, Science, and English but one of its most important courses is business.
"We want them to be financially literate so that they know how save. They know how to invest their money so they can reach some of their life goals," said Green Tech Instructional Facilitator Teresa Haig Nicol.
Six years ago, Haig Nicol started an after school program called Money-Vation.
"Money-Vation is a business club that helps to develop marketable skills for students with interest in owning their own business," Haig Nicol said.
In the program, students come up with business plans and develop their own products to sell. They also run the school bookstore, food stands at sports games, and their own t-shirt company.
"I learned how to manage a business, how to press t-shirts, how to sell, how to become more persuasive to other people," said 12th grader Nazir Gates.
Some of the money the students make, along with investments from local businesses, go toward scholarships that will help students go to college and further their business careers.
"The type of skills that the students need are not only will you own a business, it's will you know how to be financially prepared for your future," Haig Nicol said.
"I probably never would have thought I'd be a business owner, actually getting serious if it weren't for this program. It probably would have just been in my mind," Gates added.
Students also go on trips to meet with local business owners to learn about what it takes to run a business.
"What we are trying and continuing to provide is the skills that they need in order to be successful in whatever endeavor that they choose to make," said Haig Nicol.