Snooz³ is making waves as the Huntington High School Virtual Enterprise company has created noticeable momentum that is still gathering speed.
The Virtual Enterprise class that developed the concept behind Snooz³ spent many hours kicking around ideas. “Creating a product and service is extremely challenging,” said Taylor Case, the chief executive officer of Snooz³. “In this day and age it feels like almost everything possible has already been created. Given such short deadlines, it was crucial that we put all heads together and brainstorm every potential company idea. We thought about issues people struggle with day to day and what we would change in the world if we could.”
All of a sudden, Steven Queen’s hand shot up into the air. “What if we created a pillow to change the sleep industry?” asked Mr. Queen, who is now serving as vice president of sales for Snooz³.
“Quickly, we all began bouncing ideas around on what we could do to modernize and create a product all people would love,” Ms. Case said. “From that point on, we were working rapidly to create the company name, logo, color scheme and to get our company up and running. It was truly a whirlwind couple of weeks.”
Virtual Enterprise is a simulated business
A full-year, one credit business course that’s available to juniors and seniors, “Virtual Enterprise is a simulated business that is set-up and run by students to prepare them for working in a real business environment,” according to the high school’s course bulletin.
“At first, Snooz³ was just a casual idea,” Mr. Queen said. “Then I realized we could possibly turn it into something. We offer a line of sleep products using insertable pods that emit sleep inducing tactics to help you redefine your sleep. As vice president of sales, my position is to come up with strategies to make a big profit for our virtual company. I like my position and having the daily responsibilities that come with my post.”
After settling on a product, Ms. Case and business teacher Suzi Biagi went about collaborating on the selection of personnel for each of the company’s departments.
“We concluded that Nicholas Tudisco would be the chief operating officer, Trevan Meagher would be administrative vice president, Justin Lokos would be chief technological officer, Kyle Collelouri would be chief financial officer, Steven Queen would be vice president of sales, Aidan Bender would be vice president of marketing and Ainsley Lumpe would be vice president of human resources,” Ms. Case said. “The remainder of the class was divided up into the multiple departments.”
The company’s social media platforms include a website (www.Snooz3.com) along with Instagram (snooz3_ve), Facebook (Snooz³) and Twitter (@snoozzzVE) pages.
“As COO, I oversee the operations of the company and the work of the executives,” Mr. Tudisco said. “My favorite aspect of the COO position is being able to work with every department in the company. I am really interested in having an administrative role in a real company one day and VE gives me the opportunity to get a head start on learning how a real business operates.”
Snooz³ offers a sleep lifestyle line
Snooz³ offers a sleep lifestyle line based upon customizable pillows. “The pillows come with a variety of optional features such as the ability to heat, cool, play music, provide stimulation and set alarms,” according to a company prospectus. “Additionally we have studied multiple scents that are natural remedies for stress and anxiety and plan to create an assortment of scented pods which can be interchangeable and inserted into the pillows. The purpose of Snooz³ is to create a product line that gives consumers the opportunity to redefine their sleep using the different features THEY have the ability to choose.”
The company plans to donate a portion of its profits to the March of Dimes, “which is an organization who does research and helps the families of premature babies, who need up to 22 hours of sleep per day to grow and thrive,” according to the Snooz³ team. “Although the premature born babies cannot use the pillows, we hope the money we raise can help with research. We feel our pillows can help everyone else with the difficulties they face getting rest at night.”
As Snooz³ gathers steam, executives and the rest of the class are all working hard to make the firm successful. The company will be participating in the East End networking luncheon on December 19 at East Wind Caterers in Wading River. Participants will deliver company sales pitches, network with other firms and converse with mentors and business partners.
Snooz³ “is truly something special”
“I believe our company is truly something special,” Ms. Case said. “There are so many people willing to dedicate large amounts of time and effort into making Snooz³ the best it can be. I think if we continue to show passion and dedication, other companies and judges will see how special our product really is and we will continue to prove ourselves. As difficult as my position is, it is important to keep myself enthusiastic and passionate because I know it sets the tone for the rest of my team. I am also extremely grateful that I have many people who I can rely on for guidance and to provide amazing work in this class. We hope to keep everyone in the school involved and active in our company.”
Mr. Lokos is the first to admit that he has his hands full as the chief technology officer of Snooz³. “This position means a lot to me as it is similar to the career position that interests me,” he said. “I currently create apps and websites and thought the Virtual Enterprise class would be a fantastic way to test my skills in a company. Having the privilege to learn the responsibilities of this position before entering the workforce is a huge advantage, I believe. “I’m thankful to be a part of the VE program.
Mr. Lokos has already worked on a variety of tasks including the company’s website, company logos and design, branding competition, business cards and filming the recent “elevator pitch” at LIU Post. “While working on these tasks I oversee the entire design and technology team who help put the puzzle together,” he said. “I know our team and Snooz³ will soon help to redefine everyone’s sleep.”
The Snooz³ team is currently preparing for next month’s Virtual Enterprise trade show at East Wind Caterers in Wading River. “These next few weeks will be crazy and hectic,” Ms. Case said. “We are preparing to market our product to judges and other competing teams. From here on out, it will be non-stop work each day in class and we will be trying to grow our company as a whole and gain more publicity. It’s truly an exciting time for us because there is so much room for growth and development!”
Ms. Biagi is very pleased with how far her class has come in such a short period of time. “Even though Snooz³ is all about getting all the sleep you need, our students are anything but tired,” she said. “They are energized and excited to be developing a product they can see themselves using. Our CEO is magically leading this creative and eclectic group. Everyone has a job or two and as the team works together and develops key relationships throughout the VE network, but more importantly with each other, I am excited to see the skills they master and the growth and the progress they make during this year. With constant project deadlines and competitions there is plenty to do and I’m so proud of all of them. We are not just ‘redefining sleep’ we are creating an awesome young virtual company.”
“I love this job”
As chief financial officer, Mr. Collelouri is all in when it comes to running the accounting department. “My responsibilities include paying the bills and employees, creating weekly and monthly financial reports and directing our company’s overall financial plans and policies,” he said. “I love this job because I want to go into business and finance when I am older and this position will prepare me well for my future. Jack Kurathowski, Jaden Italiano, Joe Shea and Cesar Guzman are all also a big part of our accounting department at Snooz³.”
Snooz³ will be participating in the Long Island Regional Virtual Enterprise Conference & Exhibition at LIU Post on January 19. The event will bring together more than 2,000 students, teachers and business leaders. About 90 companies are expected to be on hand representing the virtual economy. Firms will compete for their booth designs, salesmanship impact marketing and more.
The Snooz³ company team also includes Aidan Heller, James Hohenrath, Maison Maerz, Luke Maffei, Joe Nicotra and Julia Steinberg.
“I also would like to give a sincere thank you for those who have helped kick start our company,” Ms. Case said. “A family of one of our employees generously donated money to helping us pay for different necessities. Additionally, a large thank you goes out to Principal Brenden Cusack and Superintendent Jim Polansky for giving us the opportunity to be a part of the special program. They have been beyond helpful and interested in the Virtual Enterprise program at our school and are always up for helping us with anything that we need. Last but not least, a huge thank you goes out to Mrs. Biagi, who has donated so much time to our program. We can truly say that without her, our class couldn’t run the way it does.”