Talan Driscoll and Abby Felkey

Talan Driscoll and Abby Felkey, Easton Valley Student Lighthouse Team representatives, talk with Maquoketa State Bank Loan Officer Laura Farrell about their loan for the Coffee Shop. 

By JENNIFER JOHNSON

Co-Leader, Student Lighthouse Team

Easton Valley Elementary’s Student Lighthouse Team opened a Coffee Shop Dec. 17 to raise funds for their Leadership Day in the spring. It was so successful they have decided to hold another one on Jan. 14 from 7:30-8:30 a.m. in the high school commons area in Preston.

The Student Lighthouse Team, comprised of 17 fifth- and sixth-graders, began the process of holding a coffee shop in November by discussing ideas on what they could do to raise funds for service learning projects on their Leadership Day in March.

They thought it would be nice to utilize the high school students and staff, since the elementary is currently right across the street from the high school in Preston. The students researched costs of supplies and materials, created a menu and then set a goal. 

The next step was to get permission from Mr. Johnson, the high school principal, to host the coffee shop in his building. The staff assisting the students wanted this to be as authentic as possible, so they required the students to obtain a loan for their supplies. Students partnered with Maquoketa State Bank to obtain a loan. 

Abby Felkey and Talan Driscoll were selected as two student lighthouse team representatives to visit with MSB loan officer Laura Farrell. Laura talked to them about the various types of loans and helped them determine which type of loan they would be utilizing for this project. 

Abby and Talan presented Laura with their expense sheet and how they planned on repaying the loan. Since the students decided to do pre-orders, they were able to give Laura an idea of how much they may be able to repay after their first sale.

Abby and Talan will also work with Laura to create a presentation they will all give to the fifth- and sixth-grade students when we return from winter break. They are going to discuss the various types of loans and the process they had to go through to get their loan as part of our financial literacy unit. 

As we look forward to our next Coffee Shop, the students have some great ideas on how to improve their experience. Teachers assisting the students gathered feedback from fifth- and sixth-graders to evaluate what changes may be necessary. 

Students are discussing how to open this up to businesses and individuals in the community as a means of raising additional funds for their Leadership Day activities.