School of Business
Olivia Stallworth headshot
Olivia Stallworth '24

Olivia Stallworth '24 was chosen from more than 10,000 applicants to participate in this summer's Goldman Sachs Virtual Insight Series. Perhaps the experience will inspire her next shirt. 

Olivia's father couldn't understand why she stuffed her backpack with all sorts of material she scored while thrift shopping. In high school, Olivia would sift through racks at Goodwill, identify popular material at basement-level cost, and then cart it off to school along with her books and other supplies. But Olivia wasn't wearing the material, she was harvesting it. Scrunchies were popular among her classmates, and Olivia discovered she could make original scrunchies and sell them for a profit. She cleared over $300.

Olivia's grown out of the scrunchie business and into the niche market of designer t-shirts. Each shirt tells a story, and the original art is a complex algorithm of symbolism and metaphor. Even her motivation is complicated. She's able to make money from her product, but it's more therapy than business.

"I deal with anxiety and depression, and to cope with that - along with medication and therapy - I make complex art pieces. Each shirt represents a societal problem. For example, 'wealthy welfare' addresses income inequality in our society." 

Olivia sells the shirts through her business, Mesij Zolar. She's already lined up investors and is working with a team of young collaborators through the La Salle Institute business program. She meets with high school students to discuss market trends, supply and demand, and other business forces that will impact sales. 

When Olivia was a junior in high school, she felt lost and burned out. She struggled just to get out of bed in the morning. The emptiness felt like a hole, and she wasn't sure how or if she'd be able to climb out. But by leaning into her company, articulating her feelings through art, and working with younger students, she's rediscovered a purpose. She regrets that her grades have suffered, but her entrepreneurial experience helped earn her seat at the prestigious 4-week long Goldman Sachs Virtual Insight Series (which begins today). Later this month, she starts a remote internship with Desert Springs Capital, a private equity firm located in California. Olivia wants to pursue investment banking, but that's just a means to her ultimate goal.

"I think of investment banking as the next career step, but I want to make enough money to then pursue entrepreneurship and philanthropy full-time. I want to give back and endorse young minds through my company. There need to be more people who are willing to take a chance on the youth."

Olivia Stallworth '24