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Local teen entrepreneurs star in film

William Mack and Ja’Mal Wills, J&W Sensations

Last year I wrote about Baltimore students who were involved in a national competition for young entrepreneurs as part of the Network for Teaching Entrepreneurship program.

NFTE was founded in New York City’s South Bronx in 1987 as a dropout prevention program and provides entrepreneurship curriculum to middle schools and high schools in low-income communities. The students learn how to start a business, from writing a business plan to implementation. NFTE’s success caught the eye of documentary filmmaker Mary Mazzio and Mazzio’s documentary on the 2008 competition debuts this week in Baltimore.

Ten9Eight: Shoot for the Moon,” premiers on Wednesday at 7 p.m. at The Brown Center at the Maryland Institute College of Art (tickets are free but must be reserved in advance.) The film will also air on Black Entertainment Television (BET) at noon on Sunday, Feb. 7.

The Baltimore students in the film are Jamal Wills and William Mack, now seniors at Patterson High School, who started J&W Sensations, a lotion company, and Anne’ Montague, a recent graduate of Forest Park High School who founded Inamoratos Dance, a nonprofit that offers affordable dance lessons to  people between the ages of 10-21.

Baltimore sent two students (Alayna Albertie and Keenen Geter) last year to the national competition and four out of the 28 national finalists were from Maryland. The first, second and third place winners were from California, Illinois and Massachusetts, respectively.