Tuesday, March 13, 2007

Enterprising Youth: Clean Cruisers

Twelve year old Forest Endicott is faced with a problem. Including tuition, room, and board, the college he has chosen to attend is going to cost him $44,000 a year. That's more than his father can afford. Unlike most kids, Forest is determined to find a way to earn that money.

With his father's support, Forest has established "Clean Cruisers". A giant leap from dog walking and raking leaves, Forest's company imports diesel powered Toyota Land Cruisers from Australia, modifies the engines to run on bio-diesel, and resells them in the United States.

He's run into a few hurdles so far, most of them compliments of our Federal Government, but he's learning valuable lessons at the same time about business and finance. It seems to me that Forest has a good idea going, if he can make it work. Environmental responsibility is the latest trend, and turning old SUV trucks into more eco-friendly transportation means not only will Mother Nature be happy, but one less truck goes into a junk yard. If he's able to find customers willing to buy these old, but durable trucks, he'll be able to earn the money he needs for college in just a few years.

I was inspired by his story when I read Gabrielle Glaser's story in the Oregonian. I wish I had the money to spend on one of his trucks. Hopefully, one of my readers will. At the very least, I think this story deserves to be passed on. Forest deserves all the help we can give him. Any 12 year old boy willing to take on the challenge of starting a company like this deserves all the positive attention we can give him.

Forest doesn't have a web site yet, but I'm told he's working on one. I'll update this story with the link when there's something to link to. In the mean time, please spread the word.

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