Johns Hopkins and Barclays to Develop Youth Entrepreneurship Program to Benefit American Indians

The Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health has partnered with Barclays Bank to develop a youth entrepreneurship program with the Bloomberg School’s Center for American Indian Health. The new initiative is aimed at designing an evidence-based program to inspire American Indian youth to stay in school and create business and social entrepreneurship opportunities.

As part of the partnership, Barclays will provide a total of $1.2 million in program funding over the course of the next three years. Additionally, Barclays employees will lend their business expertise and serve as mentors to program participants. Program efforts will first concentrate on the White Mountain Apache Reservation in Arizona with the ultimate goal to implement youth entrepreneurship programs in poverty stricken communities throughout the world.

“American Indians living on reservations in North America suffer the poorest health and socioeconomic and educational status of any ethnic or racial group in the United States,” said Mathuram Santosham, MD, MPH, director of the Center for American Indian Health and professor in the Bloomberg School’s Department of International Health. “Economic opportunity and community health are inextricably linked. The program we are launching with Barclays will go a long way toward improving both the economic and health outcomes of American Indian youth.”

Over the next three years, the Johns Hopkins team will develop, implement and evaluate the entrepreneurship program for youth enrolled in the White Mountain Apache Tribe. Key components of the program will include a highly experiential summer camp that launches a year-long program in which students will build skills and design and implement plans to pilot small business and social ventures. The curriculum will blend basic Western entrepreneurship concepts with Apache traditions that promote resilience and a sense of empowerment among youth. Pilot youth businesses will be run out of a common marketplace, centrally located on the reservation.

Within the White Mountain Apache Tribe, nearly half of all students do not graduate high school and 62 percent of those over 16 years of age are unemployed. However, the White Mountain Apache Tribe and Johns Hopkins have a 30-year partnership in which they have pioneered public health solutions that have been disseminated worldwide to overcome the most urgent disparities.

Population of focus: Youth aged 15 to 19 who live on the White Mountain Apache Reservation

Link to resource: Press release on the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health website

Date: 2013

Organization: Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health and Barclays Bank