Meet the Youth Entrepreneurs from Latvia and Lithuania!

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FIUTS is thrilled to be hosting our third cohort of students and mentors as part of the Youth Entrepreneurship Program with Latvia and Lithuania! The group includes the winning teams from the entrepreneurship competition that is part of Start Strong, a personal and career development program for youth and educators.

There are two teams from Latvia: Caffo, which developed black and white photo developing kits for people to develop their own photos at home; and Karika, which has produced a variety of gourmet foods, specializing in black garlic products. The Lithuanian team, Et Cetera, is interested in environmental sustainability - in particular, textile recycling. This program is coordinated by FIUTS and sponsored by the U.S. Embassy in Riga, Latvia and Karjeros Kodas in Lithuania.

Activities in Seattle include site visits to different organizations and companies to learn about entrepreneurship (with an emphasis on social entrepreneurship), workshops, a weekend homestay, and more! Read on to learn more about our 2019 participants:

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Edgaras, from Šiauliai, Lithuania

What is something you love about the place you live? I love the people who are around me.

What are your academic or professional interests? I'm interested in studying marketing, journalism or management. Can't decide it yet, because I'm interested in a big variety of different things.

What is your dream for the future? I dream of creating a brand and to dedicate my time and energy to it. I want to make something great.



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Egīls, from Silagals, Latvia

What is something you love about the place you live? I love the nature around me.

What are your academic or professional interests? Maybe something technical.

What is your dream for the future? Still haven't figured it out.


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Georgs, from Riga, Latvia

What is something you love about the place you live? I love my neighborhood and the local community. I like the old town of Riga, I like to spend my free time there. I like that my school and my basketball gym is very close to my house.

What are your academic or professional interests? Business, finances, and entrepreneurship.

What is your dream for the future? To work at a job I like.


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Goda, from Šiauliai, Lithuania

What is something you love about the place you live? I live in 4th largect city of Lithuania and what I love the most about it is its people. Our community is small compared to Seattle but all of us have many dfferent stories to share that always bring a smile to any rainy day.
What are your academic or professional interests? I am studying in International Bacaalaureate bilingual program. I am interested in politics, sociology, and psychology. Therefore I volunteer in a watchdogging youth initiative "Zinau, ka renku" (Eng. Learn before you vote) aiming to increase political accountability and youth involvement in politics. I am also interested in teaching, so I am trying to combine both of the fields in my free time. After my exams next year I hope to get into university and study more about it.
What is your dream for the future? My dream for the future is to have a healthy life in a Green planet and create a family. I hope to be working with youth and helping them create a better world by sharing my knowledge.


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Guna, from Madona, Latvia

What is something you love about the place you live? I like nature, the place where I live is near a sea, lake and forest. I like the four seasons of Latvia and a great weather.


What are your academic or professional interests? I'm interested in medicine and I like to communicate with people. At school I'm good at biology and chemistry.

What is your dream for the future? My plan for future is to become a good surgeon and travel over the world to see all the beauty in nature.


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Klāvs, from Riga, Latvia

What is something you love about the place you live? I love Latvia and if I ever leave to live in another country and some point in my life I will definitely return home, its nature, cultural diversity and city life is unique. In Riga i can easily enjoy free time - hangout with my friends, attend concerts and sports events,go to the gym, play volleyball, basketball and football.
What are your academic or professional interests? Im interested in chemistry, sports, business management.
What is your dream for the future? I want to attain a goal which is important to the world.


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Laura, from Šiauliai, Lithuania

What is something you love about the place you live? The place I live in has a lot of greenery around and I love that about it because it helps to reduce the stress if there is anything stressful happening in my life and helps to find peace of mind.
What are your academic or professional interests? I take interest in academic subjectst like economics, math, history and geography they give me information about the world around me and the past and the future and how to deal with certain situations that occur in life, math especialy helps me to develop my logical thinking that is essential for my future career in the business field. Professionaly and academicaly I always strive for perfection in any subject and especialy in the things that I am interested in like I always strive to get all the information possible from situations including business, making connections and etrepreneurship.
What is your dream for the future? For now I have a dream of owning my own business after I finish my studies in the university, maybe a little bakery or a pastry shop, because I love cooking and baking it makes me happy to see people enjoying the things I made for them, but if that doesn't happen I hope I can find a career path that makes me happy and motivated to achieve my goals and strive for the best I can do.


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Marcis, from Bukulti, Latvia

What is something you love about the place you live? I love the great atmosphere and friendly people
What are your academic or professional interests? I am intrested in sport
What is your dream for the future? My dream for the future is to participate in a big and memorable adventure


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Marta, from Madona, Latvia

What is something you love about the place you live? I live in a small town in Latvia, but I love the atmosphere of private houses - garden, freedom and spaciousness - so I feel good living in the grandmother's countryside. It is important to me that the house is cozy and the rooms are bright. I really like order and cleanliness.
What are your academic or professional interests? I'm fascinated by business and chemistry. I want to study business or something related to chemistry and biology in the future. But I also love working with people, so maybe I'll become a teacher.
What is your dream for the future? My dream is to work in a profession I love. I want to build a family because the family is the most important thing in my life. I really want to travel around the world. See different cultures and people. I want to visit all continents of the world.


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Robertas, from Siauliai, Lithuania

What is something you love about the place you live? I live in Siauliai, Lithuania. This city is quite small, but it has plenty of options for a person to grow learning new skills and immersing in different activities. I live in the outskirts of the city and I enjoy the lake and the park we have here. It is a very quite, calm place, which is perfect for an evening walk. It helps me concentrate and rethink my past and future actions, especially making bigger decisions.

What are your academic or professional interests? Next year I am going to study International Business in Copenhagen Business School. I've been into to math my whole life and few years ago I found economics and business very interesting as well, when I created my first student company, so this path of life seems very intriguing and exiting to me.

What is your dream for the future? I feel that I am a careerist. I enjoy studying and being known or praised for my work is extremely important for me. Therefore, i dream to have a job in finance/ business area, which would be enjoyable, challenging and make me want to push my boundaries every single day.


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Toms, from Riga, Latvia

What is something you love about the place you live? How being decent person and having good heart in here is more important than having all the wealth in the world.
What are your academic or professional interests? To some day graduate university and have degree in law.
What is your dream for the future? To be the best version of myself possible and accomplish everything Iv'e always dreamed about doing and having.


We are also lucky to have five adult mentors as part of the group as well - two of whom have been to Seattle before with previous FIUTS groups! Here they are:

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Evelina, from Šiauliai, Lithuania

What is something you love about the place you live? Love history, people, freedom, nature in my city. More than anything love family house near the lake.
What are your academic or professional interests? My academic interests would be literature, drama, and all new teaching methods, experiences.
What is your dream for the future? To make a difference.


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Iveta, from Madona, Latvia

What is something you love about the place you live? I love that I live in a peaceful town, which is close to nature and it has an interesting cultural life.
What are your academic or professional interests? I work with new entreprenuers and as an economics teacher, so my interests are mainly related to business.
What is your dream for the future? I would love to travel to Australia.


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Kristina, from Šiauliai, Lithuania

What is something you love about the place you live? I live in a small town in the North of Lithuania which has a name Šiauliai - the Sun in English. It got its name after the battle of the Sun in 1236 where Lithuanians won the victory against the Livonian Brothers of the Sword. I love that this city is rather small and you do not get into traffic jams in the rush hour. Also, there are many parks, green areas and squares in our town. We are proud t to have the third oldest pedestrian boulevard in Europe.
What are your academic or professional interests? I am an Expert Teacher of English with more than 20-year experience in teaching, a teacher trainer, an exam paper assessor, a coordinator of national and international projects. I like sharing experience and best practices at seminars and conferences of different levels as well as in national or international newspapers and magazines. I am the President of the Teachers' association "Career Code", a Board member of Lithuanian Association of Teachers of English as a foreign language, a member of International Association of Teachers of English as a foreign language. I am keen on giving workshops to students and teachers on career development.
What is your dream for the future? My dream is to do what I love doing - teaching and radiating positivity. I believe that if a person wants to change the world, he/she has to start from himself/herself. The school has to be a place where young personalities grow not only physically, but also mentally and psychologically. I am sure that with a good team I can do it!


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Laine, from Dobele, Latvia

What is something you love about the place you live? I love that Dobele is small, sunny, and safe place to live. I like when I can walk everywhere I need to and I like when Dobele is close to Riga and whenever I need I can be in capital city in 1.5 hours. I love Debele in the beginning of May when everywhere around the town blooms lilacs.

What are your academic or professional interests? My professional interest are to experience visits, meetings, tours as much as possible to start students young entrepreneurship “movement” in Dobele District. I want to establish new contacts to realize new projects to involve Dobele youth in and to show them how much they can do by themselves.

What is your dream for the future? My dream for the future is to help Dobele youngsters to go to Seattle for next year or year after.


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Lauma, from Jelgava, Latvia


What is something you love about the place you live? Firsly, I love my country. I love how such a small place on this Planet can be so diverse in sense of nature and culture. I love that more than a half of the country is covered by trees. I love the sea, what is only 40min drive from my hometown. Regarding my place where I live I love that it is the in the heart of Latvia. It is very easy to reach the capital city or go to the seaside or neighboring countries.

What are your academic or professional interests? I am passion about different approach within field of education. My inner call is to work with non-formal education methods and share them with educators and youngsters. For last ten year I have been working with international trainings by raising awareness for diverse cultures, civil society, environmental issues and work with communities.

What is your dream for the future? My dream is to have a family and own together a training venue outside the city, where we would keep horses. It would be kind of retreating place or learning space or place, where people can stop, have their time for themselves and than move on into their daily life.


Ellen Frierson