Jackson, Mo. senior awarded business grant

A high school student in Jackson got a surprise that will really help her company take off.
Published: Apr. 28, 2022 at 3:26 PM CDT
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JACKSON, Mo. (KFVS) - Starting a business takes more than a good idea, it also requires a lot of time and money.

One high schooler in Jackson got a surprise that will help her company really take off.

An ordinary Thursday morning for Makenzie Johnson turned exciting when she received $5,000 to use for her business, Bella Co.

“This is just a complete shock,” Johnson said.

Johnson said her passion for helping animal shelters and pet owners is the backbone of the business.

She makes and sells handmade pet products like dog treats, bandanas and more.

“I just want to use any proceeds that I can to help them out,” she said.

“It’s more than myself really.”

Tyler Macke launched his business, Send a Friend, right after he graduated from Jackson High School in 2017. He presented her with the check.

“We wanted to start something here at the high school to give another student that confidence in high school to pursue business,” Macke said.

“Makenzie was the perfect applicant for this scholarship or this grant and we’re super excited to see what she’ll do with it.”

“I’m ready to just fully dive into entrepreneurship,” Johnson said.

Winning this award allows Johnson to use Macke as a mentor.

“I think I can gain a lot of knowledge from him, and I just really feel like this grant is going to help me take off honestly,” she said.

Johnson said her goal is to launch a website so she can reach customers nationwide.

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