Youth Entrepreneurs

Building Brighter Futures Through Business
If there is something you have in your heart you want to change, entrepreneurship is the way to make it happen. It’s here. It’s not far off. If you commit yourself to it, you can do it. That idea changed who I am as a person. And, it can change our communities.
– Donte’ Watkins, Tucker High School, Atlanta, GA

Youth in disadvantaged and distressed communities often lack the principles, resources, opportunities, and guidance to develop career skills and ambition that lead to success in the workplace and in life. Youth in distressed communities are significantly less likely to graduate high school, pursue higher education, and start businesses.

The SOLUTION

Youth Entrepreneurs® (YE) teaches students the skills and knowledge of business ownership, as well as the important human values that will guide them to success in the workplace and in life. YE curriculum is founded upon the belief that core values — such as responsibility, freedom, sound judgment, passion, and acting with integrity — are key to a student’s success today and in the future. The accredited high school course and alumni program offers hands-on learning through the creation of business ideas and objectives. Students lead the development of their own concept by seeking opportunity and by learning how to solve problems for profit. The YE class demystifies business and introduces the concepts of value creation and opportunity. YE students practice earned success through hard work, planning, and strategy. They can experience the amazing feeling of accomplishment that accompanies a completed task. All of this is experienced at the hand of business and educational mentors in a risk-free and supportive educational environment.

The Story

YE began in 1991 as an eight-week program in a single classroom at North High School in Wichita, Kansas. The class eventually expanded into a yearlong, accredited course. Now, more than 25 years later, YE has inspired over 18,000 high school students across the nation to greater achievement than they ever thought possible.

Take Junior, for example. For him, YE was everything. When his parents divorced in middle school, Junior ended up moving frequently. The sudden instability left him just trying to survive and graduate high school. College wasn’t an option — or even a thought. With the encouragement from friends to enroll in YE, Junior started to see his life change. Junior found confidence and identified his passions. He learned how to navigate failure and strive to succeed. With mentoring, encouragement, and guidance, Junior is now the first in his family to attend college.

And, Junior is not alone. To date, 99 percent of YE alumni graduate high school, and 80 percent enroll and complete higher education. Currently in 10 states and 90 schools, YE has touched the lives of over 18,000 students.

S+ Partnership

In 2015, an expansion plan was put in place with the goal of reaching low income youth in all 50 states. Stand Together is partnering with YE to build expansion capacity and reach new markets.

 

Wichita, Kansas
est. 1991
Leadership
Kylie Stupka
President
Read bio
Kylie is president of Youth Entrepreneurs®. Prior to joining YE as executive director of Kansas and Missouri in 2007, she worked as a manager at a CPA and advisory services firm. Kylie earned her bachelor of science degree in accounting from Kansas State University. Currently, she is working to develop national educational programming that will engender self-reliance among youth by introducing, through entrepreneurship, the values and skills necessary for them to lead successful, fulfilling lives as contributing members of society. Kylie’s husband, Dustan, teaches science at Andover Middle School. The couple resides in Andover, Kansas, with their three sons.
Locations
Arizona
Texas
Oklahoma
Kansas
Georgia
Kentucky
Michigan
North Carolina
Missouri
California
Success Metrics
99%
YE alumni graduate high school
80%
enroll and complete higher education
61%
complete a bachelor's degree or higher
29%
have started a business
75%
believe YE helped change their education or career goals
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