Youth Entrepreneurship Program – Bringing Social Entrepreneurship in Classroom

entrepreneurial mindset entrepreneurship social entrepreneurship young entrepreneurs youth entrepreneurship program Jun 29, 2023
young entrepreneurs

This is fourth year that we ran a social entrepreneurship program with high school students from all across the globe. IDEAS by Youth Social Entrepreneurship Program is a 12-week program that teaches high school students how to build a business, create a prototype, and present it to a panel of experts in a shark tank format for a chance to win cash prizes (to launch their business), and months of business mentorship to take their idea to the next level.

Let us look at the program in detail.

Step One: 12-week virtual program with sessions held twice a week
Activities during the program include team building, leadership skill development, business research, conducting surveys, focus groups, and interviews about different types of businesses, prototype development, developing and presenting a business plan.



Step Two: Competition
At the end of program, youth teams present their business idea to a panel of judges in a shark-tank format. Top three teams win cash prizes to invest in their business and a 6-month mentorship to take their ideas to the next level. Judges connect with the winning teams and choose a team of their choice to become their mentor.


Step Three: Mentorship
After the competition, mentors meet with top-scoring youth teams once or twice a month under supervision of a professionally trained facilitator to ensure safety and productivity. Mentors provide guidance to young people on how to implement their projects in their communities.


Step Four: IDEAS by Youth Showcase
After three months of mentorship, youth teams present their business idea to entrepreneurs, professionals, industry partners, and experts to showcase their progress, get feedback on the next steps to take and attract more funding opportunities.



2023 IDEAS by Youth Entrepreneurship Program
This year four teams of brilliant high school students participated in the program and won cash prizes in the entrepreneurship competition which was held on May 1st 2023 via Zoom. After months of mentorship these teams presented their refined business idea to experts on June 13th. Two of our alumni teams from 2022 program also participated in the showcase. Let us introduce you to each youth team.


First Place Winner – Team Solarain – Tatsuru Taguchi (Canada) & Rina Konishi (Japan)
Team Solarain came up with the business idea of a recycled, durable, cost-effective, UV resistant, sustainable, and well-designed multi-use umbrellas. Rina Konishi is a 16 years old high school student from Japan, she is a debater, graphic designer, singer/bassist, and kickboxer. Tatsuru Taguchi is a 16 years old student from Canada, a basketball player, ultimate Frisbee player, foodie, and a guitarist/pianist. Watch their PSA HERE or watch their full presentation HERE

Second Place Winner – Team Lifeline H2 – Charles Van Dorn, Hugh A. Scully & Logan Fitzpatrick (New Jersey & New York)
Team Lifeline H2 comprises of Hugh, Charles and Logan. They came up with an idea of supplying clean drinking water to millions of people worldwide. They developed a component that can be added to pre-existing water filters to check quality of water. They designed this product since the issue of clean drinking water is important to them. Watch their PSA HERE or watch their full presentation HERE

Third Place Winner – Team All the Feels App – Tyliah Evans, Patricia Foster & Nadia Alghazaly (Philadelphia, Arizona & New York)
Team All the Feels App chose mental health as a problem to solve. Their product All the Feels App is designed to provide support to teens who are struggling with mental health. Watch their PSA HERE or watch their full presentation HERE

Fourth Place Winner – Team ESEL – Angel Zheng (New York)
Team ESEL’s mission is to support unemployed or less educated American people and immigrants in getting engineering jobs, which will as a result, support and build the economy, climate change, and most importantly improve their personal quality of life. Watch their PSA HERE or watch their full presentation HERE

Alumni Team – Team PhoenixEd – Jasmitha Keesara & Joanna Zhu (New York)
Team PhoenixEd is our third place winner from 2022. Jess and Joanna are developing an education platform for peer-to-peer tutoring. Watch their PSA HERE or watch their full presentation HERE

Alumni Team – Gaea’s Coop – Jada Williams (New York)
Team Gaea’s Coop is our winner team from 2022. Jada has a passion to resolve economic inequality issues in her community. Her company is focused on company worker relationship. She believes that improving worker’s happiness (equitable pay, work life balance, etc.) will improve company profits. Watch her full presentation HERE


The experts were blown away by these young people’s passion, brilliance, initiative, self confidence and self awareness. Their journey has just begun and we wish them all the best in their future endeavors. Our relationship with these young people continues and we will share with them the opportunities to pitch their business ideas or fundraising, etc.

Dr. Sonia Toledo believes that our youth are the present and the future and it is important to provide them with an opportunity to be brilliant, to find their purpose and choose their pathway and undertake a process which takes them to achieving their purpose in life.

If you know someone who works with youth or a high school student who is passionate about becoming an entrepreneur or even learning life and work skills including 21st century skills, please share this program with them to help us serve as many young people as possible.

Learn more about our social entrepreneurship program

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