Bluefield Daily Telegraph, Bluefield, WV

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October 3, 2012

Sweet lessons for student-run candy store

CNHI News Service

KOKOMO, Ind. - Karen Sosbe couldn’t decide what sweet treat she wanted to buy from Kokomo Confectioners Co., so she bought a little bit of a lot of things.

Such as cheesecake bites, Reese’s popcorn, chocolate-covered pretzel rods and brownies.

“My husband likes all of this stuff,” Sosbe said. “And my granddaughter is staying with us tonight, so I had to get extra of everything for her.”

Sosbe was a charter customer of Indiana’s first student-run candy shop.

The store is located inside the Kokomo Area Career Center's new international dormitory in downtown Kokomo and run by the center's culinary arts students.

It offers reality lessons in business. The goal is to provide experience in operating a retail store.

“It’s been a real business venture for them,” said Shelley Rust, culinary arts teacher. "It's been fun for them, but it’s challenging, too."

For months, students have been pricing desserts, refining recipes and even securing business permits for the building.

It’s stuff students have never been asked to do, Rust said. And, she added, it will give them a leg up when they apply to colleges, especially culinary and business schools.

Student Ian Reynolds sees the candy store as helping make his dream. “One day," he said, "I want to open my own bakery or cake shop."

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Details for this story were provided by the Kokomo, Ind., Tribune.

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