Every youth can become an entrepreneur.

We offer age-appropriate and stage-appropriate programs to connect youth with mentors and help them build a toolkit of entrepreneurial skills. We believe this leads to a generation of more determined entrepreneurial thinkers and doers…youth who will build their own businesses, work for startups, or bring an entrepreneurial perspective to whatever they do.

Our programs change the conversation.

We focus on inspiring youth to create employment opportunities for themselves. Our work changes the conversation and instills confidence in our students that they do, in fact, have control of their own future.

We’ve served over 34,000 students from elementary school through college.

Our students are highly motivated and passionate about entrepreneurship or are open to exploring entrepreneurship and developing new skills. From Chicago Public Schools to universities across the Midwest, we immerse youth in experiences to empower them to become entrepreneurs.

We’re entrepreneurs, too.

Future Founders was created in 2011 through the merger of two programs: one created by the Chicagoland Entrepreneurial Center (CEC) in 2005 and another created by Uptake Technologies Co-Founder & CEO Brad Keywell in 2006. We are led by an all-star team who has launched everything from international companies to local nonprofits to an annual celebration of ideas. We operate like a startup, work out of the nation’s number one business incubator space, and love to pilot new ways of doing things. We are actively involved in the entrepreneurial community to stay on the pulse of what’s new and how we can better prepare our students for success.

And, it works.

We’ve engaged industry leaders in the program evaluation space to build our tools and crafted an outcomes-focused philosophy that grounds our work with students in the latest research. We use data to drive our decision-making and to quickly iterate and meet the needs of youth.


Want to learn more about our work with student entrepreneurs? Let us know!