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EXCELLENCE IN ENTREPRENEURIAL LEARNING:
Equipping Baltimore Youth and Emerging Adults for Opportunity

July 1, 2024 Release

The Study

Excellence in Entrepreneurial Learning (EXCEL) is a follow-up research project to the 2017 Annie E. Casey Foundation report, "Reshaping Workforce Development in Baltimore: Ensuring Community Voice and Expertise Guide Us." This 2017 report revealed that teens and young adults in Baltimore, ages 16 to 29, "crave entrepreneurship and resources to build businesses that are free from discrimination and benefit their communities."

The EXCEL research is a landscape analysis of entrepreneurship instructional programs serving the same demographic studied in the 2017 report. Thirty-five organizations participated in this innovative design, which included traditional interviews, questionnaires, and observations. These methods helped describe program models, success metrics, stakeholder value, trauma-informed approaches, and support for learners beyond launch. Additionally, the design assessed each phase of the study to discover more effective approaches to studying youth entrepreneurship.

Unique EXCEL Value

  • The focus on learning competence: Prioritizing learning competence over successful entrepreneurship to counter the false narrative of guaranteed success. We believe better learners will become our best entrepreneurs.

  • A demonstration of thought leadership: Building a body of knowledge in urban youth entrepreneurship that is globally transferable.

  • Emphasis on improving research: Enhancing methods for studying youth entrepreneurship through formative project evaluation.

  • Efforts to enhance funder success metrics: Offering metrics that improve evidence-based returns on investments.

  • Attention to the impact of trauma: Tackling the trauma of poverty and racism by emphasizing the strength of learning competence.

  • Intent to influence public policy: Shaping policies related to young entrepreneurs as economic catalysts.

  • New strategies for engaging young entrepreneurs: Finding new ways to engage young entrepreneurs for greater social and economic impact and establishing a framework of continuous improvement through applied research.

 

How do I get the most from my EXCEL journey?
 

  • Digest the report: Spend time understanding the comprehensive report, which is meant to inspire additional questions.
  • Share feedback: Your feedback will help improve the delivery of entrepreneurship instructional programs and the way we study them.

  • Support participating organizations: Encourage participation in the EXCEL network by supporting the many organizations providing instructional services beyond the initial 35.

Our Team

The project team included participants from industry, maker  leadership, and academia. Trans-disciplinary analysis contributed to the value received from diverse perspectives.  

Our Method

The EXCEL project is an exploratory, descriptive study. A process of formative evaluation was also used in each phase of the research project to ensure research quality and new, forward-thinking approaches to future research.

Our Results

Results are presented in a report format for use by practitioners, policymakers, researchers, students, entrepreneurs, and other stakeholders in all sectors of the social, economic, and technological landscape.

Key Questions
  • What entrepreneurship instructional programs serve Baltimore, Maryland residents between ages 16 and 29?

  • What program models exist among entrepreneurship instructional programs that serve Baltimore, Maryland residents between ages 16 and 29?

  • What success outcomes/metrics are tracked in entrepreneurship instructional programs that serve Baltimore, Maryland residents between the ages of 16 and 29?

  • What is the perceived stakeholder value of entrepreneurship instructional programs that serve Baltimore, Maryland residents between the ages of 16 and 29?

  • What trauma-informed approaches, as described by the Center for Disease Control, are included in entrepreneurship instructional programs that serve Baltimore, Maryland residents between the ages of 16 and 29?

  • How are the financial resources developed and distributed to support entrepreneurship instructional programs that serve Baltimore, Maryland residents between the ages of 16 and 29?

  • How do instructional programs support Baltimore, Maryland entrepreneurs between the ages of 16 and 29 through their entire entrepreneurial lifecycle?

Position Your Team to EXCEL
Orientation Day I.PNG
Orientation Day II.PNG
Undergraduate Researcher Training.PNG
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Data Collection Guide.PNG
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