17-year-old college student takes business to the next level

By Admin. Updated 8:38 a.m., Sunday, November 20, 2022, Atlantic Standard Time (GMT-4).

In late 2019, then fourth form student at the St. Vincent Girls’ High School – Rodele Tucker started a business selling cupcakes at the school, weekly.

Three years later, with the support of friends, her baking business is showing signs of improvement.

In an interview with One News SVG, the 17-year-old Richmond Hill resident said she’s currently a student in the Hospitality and Tourism department of the SVGCC Division of Technical and Vocational Education. She is currently pursuing an associate degree in hospitality studies.

She said her business – Tonika’s Thweet Touch is a small business that offers a range of baked goods such as brownies, cinnamon rolls, cupcakes, cakes and cheesecakes. Custom orders are also provided.

One ordered box of Tonika Touch goodies

“I started this business to make a small earning, being able to provide day to day needs and to feel a sense of independence while also providing sweet treats to my classmates,” she said.

She said the business has been showing some growth.

“The business has been growing slowly but surely expanding customer market through word of mouth and social media,” she said.

The 17-year-old who describes herself as “independent, big hearted and friendly” said she manages to balance school and business.

“Baking is not a daily activity, but when there are orders to be completed school work is usually done before or during school hours. Deliveries are usually done in the time after school,” she said.

She said her friends, mostly college students pursuing business-related programs assist her by applying what they learn. Many of them assisted her on Saturday, November 19, at a sale in Kingstown, and they wore her logo.

“Those wearing the logo are close friends who, from the supported the business and furthermore the idea of the bake sale. Some of these persons advise on products that can be improved or introduced. Some simply wanted the branded shirt to support.

She said she too applies business and customer services principles as she takes time to “interact with customers to understand their likes and dislikes and the best way to meet their needs”.

Rodele said: “In a few years, I see the business with a base location where customers may be able to access a wider range of goods to satisfy their cravings.”

She also plans to “create custom cakes and cater to major events being held.”

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