Saxbys Campus Cafes Give Students On-the-Job ExperienceBowie State University President Aminta Breaux, left, inaugural Student CEO Devin Gallion, center, and Saxbys Founder and CEO Nick Bayer toast the grand opening of Bowie State’s Saxbys.A recent study conducted by the National Association of Colleges and Employers pointed to a disturbing trend. While graduates believe they are well prepared for a job, employers increasingly think otherwise.
Nick Bayer, Founder and CEO of public benefit corporation and hospitality company Saxbys, expressed it to me this way: “The job market demands skills like critical thinking, emotional intelligence, problem solving, cultural agility — attributes that are extremely difficult if not impossible to teach in a classroom.”
Bayer developed the Saxbys Experiential Learning Platform (ELP), a student-centric entrepreneurship opportunity that partners with leading universities to give students the opportunity to run a business— specifically a bustling on-campus café.
Each ELP cafe is helmed by a Student CEO (SCEO) and a team of undergraduate students who are fully responsible for the business, and in return receive academic credit as well as financial compensation. The program also has an important educational component. Starting three months before their term, the SCEO completes 100 hours of training in three areas: