In mid-September, 12th-grade Spartan Mikaila Ulmer was named among the “Top 10 Young CEOs to Know” by CEO World Magazine. Ulmer is founder and CEO of Me & The Bees Lemonade, which invests a portion of its profits to organizations helping save the bees and their habitats through education, research and protection.
We recently asked the young entrepreneur about her success and future plans.
What does being named a young CEO to watch by a major business publication mean to you?
It lets me know that established businesses and executives are invested and paying attention to this generation of entrepreneurs. One thing that meant a lot to me was how many of the businesses on this list were socially conscious businesses, either donating their services, products or funding to a cause like mine does. So it means a lot to know that CEO World Magazine is not only recognizing me for the success of my business, but also because of the impact it has made. For Me & the Bees, it means that our mission is getting more exposure to a larger audience, and more people can become the “me” in my effort to teach social entrepreneurship to kids and to save the bees.
Have you decided what you want to study in college?
As many of my teachers know, I’m still figuring it out! Any science class is usually bound to be my favorite, and I love the idea of designing and creating innovative technologies to help the environment or people. I’ve seen firsthand how businesses can grow and sustain themselves while also helping their communities and beyond, so business is a possible path. And thanks to St. Stephen’s, which has introduced me to students from all over the world, I am planning to do multiple study abroad or internship programs in college.
What have you enjoyed most about your four years at St. Stephen's?
The best part of attending St. Stephen’s has been life on The Hill. I know that encompasses such a wide variety of people, activities and classes, but that’s exactly it. I love how I can collaborate on projects at the picnic tables with other seniors while Tame Impala music is blasting. I’m amazed at how deep I can get into a conversation with someone during the 15-minute advisory time. And I love the exposure I’ve had to so many cultures of the places Spartans call home.
What will you miss most about St. Stephen's when you graduate?
I think I will miss the Devil’s Canyon Adventure Program (DCAP) the most and all the incredibly fun people in it. In my sophomore year, I was shocked when I discovered that the school has sports like caving, mountain biking, rock climbing and canoeing available to its students. Traveling to Tennessee, Alabama and Georgia with everybody to go caving for a few days was so memorable, along with practicing at the rock wall or towers while having fun.