THERE’S QUITE THE BUZZ AT BERKELEY THESE DAYS
The Buccaneer Bee Company was an idea born when school administrators brainstormed ideas for creating a unique school gift as a takeaway for school visitors. They asked, “what is unique to Berkeley that we can share with others?” After several unsuccessful attempts at various creations, our science department began “buzzing” over the potential of the Berkeley bee hives, located on campus.
Yes, Berkeley has bees – 17 hives of them to be exact!
Here, aspiring beekeepers collect honey and study the behavior of honeybees under the supervision of Science Department Chair Dr. Nicole Ackerson and AP Environmental Science teacher Charlotte Whetstone. The Buccaneer Bee Company was founded by students to improve the ecosystem and help beautify the Berkeley campus through a widely-feared, but mostly harmless, entity — the bee. With the support of the Berkeley Fund, the Buccaneer Bee Company was able to “take flight” by purchasing bee hives and platforms, honey extraction equipment, beekeeping materials and equipment, and beekeeping suits.
Members of the Buccaneer Bee Company receive authentic Berkeley honey for their participation. A majority of the honey, however, is allocated to visitors as a unique gift. The Buccaneer Bee Company is now making and selling honey-made soaps through the Treasure Cove, with all profits donated to the Berkeley Scholarship Fund. The BBC has a complete business model in place that will eventually launch a multi-divisional approach to the development of entrepreneurial skills in a real-world environment. In the future, students in in all three divisions will play an important role in this business model that will provide hands on marketing skills in the Lower Division, finance and distribution skills in the Middle Division, and product development and management skills in the Upper Division.