What a ‘roll’ model!

a'Ron Burns, a 17-year-old high school student and an alumnus of Civic Nebraska's Trailblazer Afterschool Academy, is making history in Omaha, one rolled ice cream treat at a time.

In 2019, a’Ron Burns was an Omaha Central freshman and freshly graduated from Civic Nebraska’s Trailblazer Afterschool Academy at Lewis and Clark Middle School. When he got a part-time job at a local rolled ice cream shop, he saw his first glimpses into his future – owning his own shop someday.
As it turns out, “someday” was right around the corner. Now 17 and a senior at Central, a’Ron owns and operates Roll-N-Sweetz, 5921 Ames Ave. 
The shop opened June 11 to rave reviews. Just two days later, a’Ron hosted our 2022 Trailblazer students and staff, serving up delicious treats and words of wisdom and encouragement. He also shared with his fellow Trailblazers how his time in the Academy helped to make him who he is today.
Tracy White, who directs the Academy, said she’s not surprised at all that a’Ron is making history as one of the youngest – if not the youngest – restaurant entrepreneurs in the state. a’Ron was a committed and engaged leader during his middle-school years, serving as the Academy’s class president, she said. He also spoke at the University of Nebraska at Omaha’s prom for seniors, on which the Academy partnered with the UNO Department of Gerontology. 
“a’Ron gives his best self to everything he does,” Tracy said. “It’s wonderful to see such an accomplishment from a committed young person in our community.”
In addition to serving up frozen delights, a’Ron also is ensuring that Roll-N-Sweetz serves the community. “I would have never thought that at 17 years old I would get to pursue this dream,” a’Ron wrote. “I’m excited to form community partnerships that will help a variety of organizations, schools, and more.”  
We’re proud and humbled to be a small stop on a’Ron’s road to success and service. Roll on, a’Ron!

Learn more about our Youth Civic Leadership programs.

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