The Blackstone Charitable Foundation has announced a $40 million commitment to expand its LaunchPad entrepreneurship program at minority-serving institutions.
With the commitment, Blackstone LaunchPad — which mentors college student-founders from idea to growth stage and provides students interested in entrepreneurship with content, connections, and access to experts and mentors — will expand the program from thirty to seventy-five campuses over the next five years, with a focus on colleges and universities that have a majority-diverse student body or are serving underresourced communities. The foundation will partner with UNCF to identify new participating schools, develop plans in support of students, and amplify the program's impact.
The announcement follows a $5 million grant awarded in January to the University of Texas System to bring the LaunchPad program to six additional UT campuses, including four that are designated as Hispanic-serving institutions (HSIs).
"Our partnership with Blackstone underscores the firm's commitment to genuinely expanding its offerings to reach more diverse students," said UNCF president Michael Lomax. "We have been impressed with their expansion plans and hope to grow this partnership to continue making LaunchPad more inclusive."
(Photo credit: UNCF)