We relate the entrepreneurship classes to their sport, so for football we call the first class “The All Out Blitz.â€ Just like in football, a blitz is when the defense goes all-in and everyone attacks. We teach our students that you have to be the same way about your business. You have to be committed and go all-in for your idea. Further, just like teams have different identities, we tell our student athletes, they need a specific identity for their company so their potential donors and customers can have a clear understanding of their product.
We also teach them about how to do a market analysis, as they have to know their opponent and their competition in sports and in business, how to properly charge for their products and more. Phase 1 ends with an elevator pitch competition with real judges and real rewards, which we call “The 2 Minute Drill.â€ Just like when an athlete is in college entering the NFL and they have to show everything they have done and present themselves in front of an audience, that’s what we do with our students during the elevator pitch competition.
What is the impact the organization has had so far?
AfterÂ twoÂ years running our programs with student athletes, we saw a 21.2% gain in entrepreneurial knowledge. We had as high as 50%, 90%, and 130% increase in some student’s knowledge of the fundamentals of entrepreneurship.
Post program surveys and interviews revealed:
- 100% of students wanted to learn more about entrepreneurship
- 100% of students increased their entrepreneurial knowledge
- 96% have learned to make better decisions
- 79% have become better leaders
- 100% enjoyed participating in this program
(All data derived from exams, presentations, and surveys from teachers, students, and parents)
How did the White House invitation come about?
This event came about from a connection we have with Derrick Heggans, founder ofÂ Team TurnaroundÂ and managing director of the Wharton Sports Business Initiative. We were able to attend a roundtable discussion about the state of the minority male athlete.
What’s next for FLYE?
We definitely want to expand. We wanted to start with one beta school and make it scale-able, so that we can have a package, and train someone to be able to implement it at their school. We are still focusing on programming at one school until we receive funding to expand because we don’t want to short change any other schools. We want to be able to provide them with the same tools they are getting at Eleanor Roosevelt.
In addition to starting a program at additional schools, FLYE is also looking to implement FLYE Summer, which will be under the School of FLYE (SO FLYE), for middle school students. It will take on the model of a summer camp where parents will be able to drop their sons off during the day. Half of the day will be athletics and skills training, led by FLYE alumni, and for the other half, students will be led through our entrepreneurship curriculum. After we receive the initial seed funding, our goal is to have this program be self-sustained. It will allow us to continue to bring in resources and have a pool of candidates for the high school program every year.
To learn more about FLYE’s programs and how you can help them assist young students visit FLYE.org.Â Also, be sure to follow them on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram @FLYEORG.