Teaching youth the value of hard work with business, art & STEM experiences.



Our mission is to break the cycle of local poverty by training the next generation of ethical, entrepreneurial and environmental leaders. Our programs help youth identify their own natural gifts and talents and then teaching them how to monetize these skills and use them to start a small business. We guide students through a dynamic B.A.S.E. curriculum (Business, Art & STEM Experiences), to develop the personal qualities that predict future professional success.


In DC, petty crime is one of the leading causes of incarceration for young people ages 14-24 years old. Many of these arrest are consequences of individuals becoming involved in illegal and unsavory activities as a means to make money. Many of these young men and women feel trapped by poverty and lack any belief that they can actually be successful doing the right things. The goal of our programs are to show youth that they don’t have to do anything illegal, immoral or unethical to make money. Instead, they already possess everything they need to be successful and they just need to learn how to tap into their gifts.  By helping young people see their own intrinsic value and teaching the value of hard work, we hope to inspire youth to dream big, to work hard and to use their talents achieve academic, professional and personal success.

01.Entrepreneurship education

We utilize entrepreneurship as a vehicle for youth to learn marketable STEAM skills (science, technology, engineering, art and math). Our goal is to inspire youth to acquire the educational skills and self-confidence needed to “put poverty out of business.”



02.college readiness

Our goal is to provide youth with college experiences as early as possible. Through our programs youth can earn up to 12 college credits and receive individual guidance to propel each student to post-secondary education and career success. 

03.character development

Our program goal are as much about character development, as it is about entrepreneurship education.  We hope to teach youth that not all money is created equal and to explore the moral and legal consequences of pursuing fast money.

04.career readiness

Our ultimate goal for each student is that he or she is self-sufficient and has a career, not just a job. We focus on improving 21 century workforce skills: leadership ,development, resilience, self-confidence, teamwork & professionalism.


“The struggle  is real ,

but so is the HUSTLE.”

tacharna crump|  founder



Youth Entrepreneur Institute was founded in 2015 to address the historic lack of entrepreneurial services available to youth in DC. The effects of inner-city social turmoil which took place in the 1960’s and 70’s throughout the nation hit Ward 6, 7, and 8 community in DC very hard. Our neighborhood experienced unprecedented real estate abandonment and disinvestment as riots flared, buildings burned and drugs were rampant.

A diverse group of DC residents, workers, artists, educators, scientists, athletes, businesswomen and community activists organized in 2015 to address this obvious inequity. Soon thereafter Youth Entrepreneur Institute was founded.

Today, Youth Entrepreneur Institute continues to grow. Since 2015, we have served over 500 students and helped over 50 students start successful businesses.  We are very proud of the progress we have made.  

Founding Vision

Two years ago, Youth Entrepreneur Institute didn’t exist. No staff, no programs, no building. And, quite frankly, no manual to follow on how to build an innovative and sustainable organization for budding youth entrepreneurs. After identifying this huge gap, we had a mission: start a place that provides business services for youth in their own backyard. We have consciously set out to create a new model of a communitygrassroot organization, creating a culture that values creativity and experimentation, while putting youth at the center of community development and revitalization. Our founding vision was a dual one: to reframe the field of youth development as a ‘whole community’ issue, and to construct a building to house that vision.

As a community-basedgrassroot  we work to overcome the fragmentation of youth services through partnerships with other non-profit organizations that share our mission, with local businesses, academic institutions, faith-based communities, and with our members’ families.  By creating a ‘whole-youth’ approach – emphasizing a broad range of cultural competencies needed for success – curiosity, poise, happiness, resiliency, health, college and job readiness – we use more than academic performance to benchmark our impact. Our programs are designed to create an integrated experience, where education (like life, in general) is not compartmentalized and all are welcome!



Students at Youth Entrepreneur Institute conceive, launch,and run their own business ventures. 



Dazzle Creations

Carolyn Howard, Owner and YEI Graduate

Dazzle creations

Dazzle Creations is a kids party planning business that believes in "over the top"  affordable parties specifically designed with youth in mind.  In addition to party planning services, Dazzle Creations custom makes birthday outfits including tshirts, tutus, shoes, and accessories. It is founded by Carolyn Howard, a 24 year old mom from Ward 8. She plans to expand her market share using etsy, social media campaigns, and Groupon.  If you are planning a kids party in D.C., you can find her previous projects and work on instagram.


X.O. By Xio

Ashley Garland, Owner and YEI Graduate

xo BY xIO

X.O. By Xio is a hair care business that believes in “curls and confidence” and strives to empower young women to be confident in their natural hair. It is founded by Ashley Garland, a 21 year old D.C. licensed stylist from Ward 7 .All of her our products are made from natural ingredients and sulfate free. Ashley has experience working with all hair types and clients which has recently included our current president's daughter. To book an appointment with Ashley or purchase her hair products please email xiomaragarland@gmail.com


Miss T and Co.

Tamara Russell, Owner and YEI Graduate


Miss T and Co is a event planning business that believes in “every last detail”.  Mrs. T and Co specializes in bartending and beverage catering. It is founded by Tamara Russell, a 24 year Alcohol Manager from Ward 7.  She plans to expand her products by bottling her own handcrafted "Mocktails" and finding a distributor to help her secure and fulfill national sales.  If you are planning a wedding, baby shower, or professional gathering in D.C., you can find her previous projects and work on instagram.


Support us by coming out to one of our upcoming events.

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KidBizCOn 2018

 KidBiz Con 2018 will take place on Tuesday, July 31st on the George Washington University campus (2201 G Street NW). The schedule is  jammed packed with key-learning to show youth how to conceive, launch, and run their own business ventures

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For more information, contact  daynne.dixon@dc.gov


Ready to help?



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