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American Enterprise Day

November 15

A National Celebration

This day is set aside to recognize how free enterprise has made our country great! Through improved productivity, better technology and entrepreneurship, the American free enterprise system builds a better tomorrow for all.

American Enterprise Day began with a proclamation from Jimmy Carter in the late 1970s and developed into an awareness program entitled "Getting Involved" under a grant from the Chevron Corporation. This program, which was conducted in the 1980s, was designed to generate chapter activities through the use of "Getting Involved" guidance materials created and distributed by the FBLA-PBL National Center. "Getting Involved" had three objectives:

  • To get local chapter members involved in their business community, placing particular emphasis on the free enterprise system.

  • To provide opportunities for members of the local business community to become involved in the process of educating tomorrow's business leaders.

  • To generate activities which promote American enterprise on November 15 and throughout the school year.

Because of the success of chapter's in promoting and getting involved in Free Enterprise, National FBLA continues to promote FBLA-PBL this day since that time even though there is no longer a grant from the Chevron Corporation.

Chapters can do a variety of different projects to promote American Enterprise Day.



Freedom is the principle on which the United States were founded. More than 200 years later, freedom serves as the nation's political foundation. Freedom is the cornerstone of the American economic system. It is often called the free enterprise system because of freedoms of the marketplace.
In this system, individuals must make economic choices in an effort to satisfy their needs and wants. Nations, too, must make and set goals.  There are two main points of free enterprise:

Features of Free Enterprise

Goals of Free Enterprise


  • Owning private property

  • Individuals and businesses are free to enter contracts.

  • Individuals are free to make personal choices and communicate these choices through the price system.

  • Individuals are free to engage in free enterprise and competition.  Free to choose place of work, open own business choosing type of goods or services they will produce.

  • Individuals are free to look after their own self-inters.

  • American economic system is relatively free from government interference.


  • Maintain economic freedom

  • Efficiency - to make the best use of scarce resources

  • Provide sense of justice - know as economic equity

  • Economic stability must be set to maintain employment and stable prices

  • Economic security - individuals can help protect themselves again the unexpected by buying insurance

  • Economic growth - to increase the amount of goods and services that each worker in the economy can produce.


Examples of projects that have had success include the following.

Reaching Elementary School Students

  • Write and present songs and skits about American enterprise to an assembly of students in grades K-5.

  • Create activity booklets geared to students in grades K-5.

  • Ask local businesses what gives them a business advantage; tailor their answers into a 30-minute presentation, using a mix of lectures and games for students in grades 1-6.

Reaching Middle and High Schools

  • Have business students write essays on the American enterprise system; publish winning entries in the school newspaper.

  • Stage a Monopoly® tournament with customized rules representing various economic systems.

  • Develop a workbook for eighth graders about free enterprise and the job market. The workbook should have information on how to fill out job applications, different occupations, and earnings.

  • Conduct a free enterprise mystery game over the public address system: each day for a week, students get one clue to help them guess the secret word chosen for American Enterprise Day.

Reaching College/University Campuses

  • Put together a panel of expert speakers to address the advantages and disadvantages of owning a business.

  • Sponsor a five (5) month forum on American enterprise, covering issues from manufacturing, entrepreneurship, and banking to international business.

  • Sponsor a seminar on women or minorities in business.

Reaching the Community

  • Have local businesses advertise American Enterprise Day on their signboards and distribute literature about American Enterprise Day along with doughnuts at local retailers.

  • Sponsor a tour of local businesses.

  • Buy a half-page ad in the local newspaper to promote American Enterprise Day; sell portions of the ad to local businesses.

  • Stuff literature about American enterprise in grocery bags at a local supermarket.

  • Prepare a proclamation of American Enterprise Day in your community.  icon Sample American Enterprise Day Resolution (14.31 kB)