Cleveland High School’s mall is open for business


Clarion photo Ashley Lytle

By Ashley Lytle, Reporter

The place to find espresso drinks, your very own Cleveland apparel, or snacks to get you through your day has officially opened for the year. Staffed with the most talented, smart, entrepreneurial students, the Cleveland Mall is ready for this new year.

Nov. 5 during the Cleveland clubs fair, the Mall made its debut, ready to become a hotspot for students. While they only sell coffee, espresso drinks, snacks, and some apparel right now, the staff of this Mall have hopes to expand their product line as the year progresses.

The class hopes to get coffee order forms into the office for teachers, a coffee cart to put in the main hall, and to expand their current products: drinks and food as well as apparel. That’s only some of their ideas.

Ben Weston, the teacher for the Cleveland Mall said, “[The opening] went smoothly, the students were well prepared for it. Sales were not as high I think as everyone had hoped, but it’s just something to learn.”

“I think it went really well. We got a lot more people who came in than I expected. Not very many bought things, though,” said Cleveland junior Simon Rowe.

Junior Mikayla Austen expressed, “It was a little crazy but I think we did pretty good for it not being ready to open.”

Some of the students running the mall felt opening day wasn’t as great as they hoped as Vaughn Martin, junior, explained, “Opening day was disappointing. There were people but we were hoping for more.”

Talking about the staff this year Weston said, “They’re motivated, they’re excited, and I think that it’s a learning process. They’re still learning how to run a business and how hard they have to work, but I think they’re getting there.”

Weston says the students this year “are more driven and they’re following through on their ideas.”

“I definitely think this is a good team. We’re going to do good and have fun this year,” said Martin.

Students have hope that over time sales will improve significantly. Their main goal is to get the word out about the Cleveland Mall and to get people to come in.

Alex Depaz, senior, would like to see “more diverse groups of people to start coming in during lunch, during flex, whenever we’re opening because we really just want it to be an all inclusive area.”

The class is made up of juniors and seniors, with a couple of sophomores in the mix.

Currently Weston only has the one class for the Cleveland Mall, but hopes that they’ll gain more student interest and be able to have a couple of classes.

Said Rowe of why he feels other students would enjoy being apart of it, “It’s fun. You get to learn how the real world works.”

Junior Will Altamirano, said the class has helped him learn how to deal with, “for lack of a better word, a boss. I’ve also taken more initiative and may not be the best team leader but in some ways I’ve become one,” he said.

If you need another reason to want to be a part of this community, Martin expressed that, “It’s a fun and community based experience. You get to know people and you get to learn lifetime skills.”

The students running the Cleveland Mall have dreams for it and are always working to improve and learn from both their success and failure.

As Altamirano explained, “It’s prestigious. Only the best of the best work in here. You’ve got to prove your chops.”

You can find the dedicated staff running the Cleveland Mall before school, at lunch, and also during Flex time as they learn what it takes to run a business and work to create an environment where everyone is welcome.