Equity in Entrepreneurship

The Equity in Entrepreneurship program is made possible, in part, by a grant from Truist and the Florida Blue Foundation.

Check out our Equity in Entrepreneurship online resources on our Resource page.

The Equity in Entrepreneurship Start Up Studio program, is a collaborative project of Grow to Greatness Ventures and AMRoC Fab Lab, in partnership with the Hillsborough County Small Business Development Center (SBDC) and local area business leaders.

The goal of the project is to help bridge the race and gender equity gap in early stage entrepreneurship access in the Tampa Bay startup ecosystem .

Participants will learn how to take an idea and build it into a business model, how to pivot a small business that’s experiencing stagnant growth or who are stuck on what to do next.  The 16 week session features a different Entrepreneur-in-Residence each week from local and minority owned businesses, sharing real world experiences and expertise.

Students receive full entrepreneurial educational programming from inception to incorporation and bank micro-grant seed funding for their business as they progress through the program 

Our first cohort finished November 2020 with a 90% success rate and 10 new businesses launched or relaunched!  

However, registration for this program is ongoing, with our 2nd session starting in early 2021.  Priority consideration given to Black and Hispanic applicants, ages 16+ from the University/Uptown Tampa area.

The program kicks off with a 4 week, 8 session SBDC Idea Camp experience. The majority of group coursework will be online, with generous opportunities for individual in-person mentoring and support.  Computers and wi-fi access are provided at AMRoC for participants who may lack access to either or both.

Start your journey to entrepreneurship

Check out our Synapse Converge presentation on the Equity in Entrepreneurship program, with two of our inaugural cohort members, Slay Bay Beauty and Angel Eyes Home Watching Service. View slide deck overview HERE.

With Gratitude to Our Program Partners and Mentors In Residence!

Tonya Elmore, President and CEO, Tampa Bay Innovation Center

Vanessa Ferguson, Ferguson Legal

Carol Minor, Manager, Entrepreneur Services/FSBDC Center Director

Tony Selvaggio, CEO, eSmart Recycling

Chris Morancie, CTO, Net Synergy Virtual Solutions

David Eason, CEO Council

Diana Hechavarria, USF MUMA

Justin Heacock, Entrepreneurship Center, Florida Polytechnic University

Francis Joseph, Chair, Caribbean American National Development Organization

Pam Oakes, US Auto Training

Michael Hamilton, Head of Growth, NET SVS

Shane Smith, Jim Moran Institute for Global Entrepreneurship

Yvette Clayton, Building Toward the Future Student Program

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