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Blackstone Charitable Foundation Expands LaunchPad Program

The Blackstone Charitable Foundation today announced a $3 million three-year grant to train the next generation of entrepreneurs in the Philadelphia region of Pennsylvania.

Blackstone Chairman, CEO and Co-Founder Steve Schwarzman delivered the keynote address at this morning’s announcement, which took place at the University City Science Center in Philadelphia.  Also in attendance were U.S. Senator Pat Toomey, Under Secretary of Commerce for Intellectual Property & Director of the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office, David Kappos, and other local elected officials in addition to over 100 guests and student entrepreneurs.

Modeled after a program successfully piloted by the University of Miami, Blackstone Launch Pad is a college and university-based program that treats entrepreneurship as a mainstream career path with the goal of teaching students and alumni how to create jobs, not just find jobs. 

In 2010 the Blackstone Charitable Foundation helped bring LaunchPad to Detroit, Michigan, an area severely impacted by the loss of its predominant industry and in need of a new generation of entrepreneurs.  Since then, 315 ventures have been advised by Blackstone LaunchPad staff and consultants. In total, 64 new businesses and 101 jobs have been created or supported.

Based on the early success of LaunchPad, President Obama’s “Startup America Initiative” asked The Blackstone Charitable Foundation to expand it to five new regions over the next five years.  The Foundation chose Northeast Ohio as its first expansion region and today is proud to announce its the Philadelphia as its second expansion region. 

The $3 million grant to Philadelphia University and Temple University will collectively reach more than 40,000 students and has the potential to create more than 200 businesses and hundreds of jobs over the next four years.

Watch video about this exciting program here.

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