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Daniel Corno ’02 is not waiting for graduation to dive head first into the business world.

Through an internship, Corno is working to purchase a restaurant franchise with advice from accountant Sydney Schultz, a family friend who is retired from Berg, Shultz and Green in Allentown.

“My intent is to form a limited liability corporation to focus on a franchise investment,” says Corno, an economics and business major with a minor in sociology. “A high school friend of mine and I are looking into opening a Pita Pit. It’s a company based out of Canada.”

According to Corno, Pita Pit has 10 to 15 locations in the United States already, mostly in college towns. He is mulling Santa Barbara, Calif., as a site for the franchise, which would be purchased with capital of $150,000, of which private investors have committed $100,000.

“Mr. Schultz is guiding me through the business plan and aiding me with his technical expertise,” says Corno. He adds that throughout the internship, which will continue next semester, he has talked with businesspeople and lawyers to decide what type of corporation is best for his purposes.

“The internship has left me with invaluable experience in the formation of a company, the writing of a business plan, the raising of capital, and the legal aspects of an LLC,” he says. “My hope is to form a franchise investment firm and to run it successfully for roughly three years before going to graduate school.”

A friend and business adviser to several generations of Corno’s family, Schultz says he is using his 43 years of experience in managing business operations, auditing, and taxes to assist Corno.

“He’s a great boy, and I want him to succeed,” says Schultz. “I know his whole family — his parents, grandparents, and great grandparents — and I expect him to do well.”

Schultz has not seen the facts and figures yet, but expects to receive Corno’s business proposal and plan any day now. In addition, Schultz says Corno is checking out the company to determine how much support it offers franchisees. That is “a key factor” in whether the student should proceed, the accountant says.

Corno says the internship is allowing him to focus on areas of business and economics that particularly interest him — finance and management.

“Forming a corporation and writing a business plan truly tests my ability to manage and my understanding of finance in creating a profitable business,” he says, adding that it forces him to apply concepts and theories learned in class to real life. “I’m in control, in creating and building a business.”

Describing the academic environment at Lafayette as strong, the student comments that “the possibilities, if harnessed, are endless.”

“Within the economics and business department, I have met with nothing more than the utmost enthusiasm from all of the faculty, and this is one of the reasons I feel I’ll be successful,” Corno adds.

Corno has also completed internships with Mason Cos., a financial planning firm in Reston, Va. He has been recommended as a tutor for Lafayette’s Financial Theory and Analysis course and may take his CPA examination this May.

Categorized in: Academic News