START UP! Academy aims to develop students’ interests & cultivate entrepreneurial mindset--to think and take action in the world of commerce and social enterprise. Students will learn to be creative problem solvers and refine communication skills through hands-on project based learning experiences, mentorships, and culminating capstone projects. This Academy will give students the opportunity to be the next generation of change-makers and leaders that our society needs to meet the challenges ahead.
Students will take a business idea and develop a multi-dimensional business plan which will be evaluated during a “Shark Tank” type format with real cash prizes for selected winners. Students will conduct customer interviews and work with mentors to iterate on their business model until they have achieved product-market fit. Students also develop marketing campaigns, financial and operational plans in preparation for launching their businesses.