Saturday, December 10, 2005

Apprentice TV Show finalist Rebecca Jarvis

Minneapolis native is finalist on show
As bowlers watched the Minnesota Wild hockey game on TV sets above the lanes at Elsie's Bowling Center in Northeast Minneapolis on Thursday night, friends and relatives of the Jarvis family were watching a different type of game on a big screen in one of the venue's banquet rooms.
More than 50 folks anxiously watched Thursday's episode of "The Apprentice" to catch a glimpse of the business acumen of one of their own. Minneapolis native Rebecca Jarvis is one of the final two contestants of the NBC-TV reality show in which contestants perform a variety of business-related tasks for real estate mogul Donald Trump. The winner lands a job in New York City as Trump's next "Apprentice."
As people settled into their seats, Jim Jarvis' cell phone rang. It was Rebecca calling her father. She wanted to report she was stuck in traffic in Chicago, along with her mother, Gail MarksJarvis — a former Pioneer Press business columnist — unable to get to their destination to watch the second-to-last episode of the show, which was taped months ago.
"They are in gridlock," said Jim Jarvis, a management consultant and co-owner of Altec Energy Systems, a Minneapolis-based company that focuses on energy-conservation practices for businesses.
Rebecca Jarvis, a 24-year-old graduate of St. Paul Academy and the University of Chicago, endured 10 rounds of elimination on the intense reality show. On Thursday, the Chicago financial journalist was handed her final task of the competition. She had to organize an all-star comedy event while her opponent, 34-year-old Rhodes scholar Randal Pinkett, was assigned to put together a celebrity softball game.
At this point in the competition, the winner is anyone's guess. Ultimately, Trump will determine whether Rebecca is tough enough to work for him next Thursday during the show's two-hour live finale from Lincoln Center in New York.
Even though Randal (contestants use only their first names on the show) has an amazing list of academic and business successes, Rebecca also has an impressive resume.
She was named by Teen People magazine as "One of the 20 Teens Who Will Change the World" in 2000; created the Minnesota Youth Alliance in her early teens; and shared a stage with political heavyweights Colin Powell and Al Gore at a youth conference. Plus, she has had to compete for a majority of the show while on crutches — she broke her ankle in the second episode, thanks to an ice skating accident during an "Apprentice" episode in which she was playing hockey.
"If I'm a business guy and I want someone to bet on for the future, I'd go with Rebecca," Jack Militello a professor of management at the University of St. Thomas, said earlier this week. "She carried the water bucket and she did it with a broken ankle."


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