In July 2016, The Gray Matter Experience (TGME) set out to narrow the gap in opportunities existing for minority high school students to become entrepreneurs. We created our two-phase program to provide these students with the resources necessary to develop solutions to issues that plague their communities by establishing businesses that support the demographics of under-resourced neighborhoods across Chicago.
Phase I of the TGME program lasts 12 weeks, consisting of workshops in which students collaborate with peers to develop business plans that will impact their communities. These workshops also serve as a way to foster relationships between participants and minority founders and professionals who teach business concepts that students can apply directly to their business plans.
After Phase I, students who want to pursue launching their company are placed into the nine-week GMEChangers Incubator, where they use the funding received from Phase I to bring their businesses to life.