In 2015 GEF forged a strategic partnership with Ball High School to rally community support for the IncubaTOR program. Fast forward two years, and IncubaTOR is flourishing! During the 2016-2017 school year, Ball High School’s IncubaTOR class had six creative business teams pitch the products and services they had been developing since last August to GEF’s IncubaTOR Board of Investors. Three of these teams impressed the investors enough to earn startup funding and a second year in the IncubaTOR course! A total of $2,050 was awarded to help the following teams continue their learning experience and gain traction in each of their unique markets.
- EcoCare Car Wash – With a desire to take care of the environment and bring convenience to their customers, this team has designed the ultimate car wash service unlike any the industry has ever seen. Not only do they come straight to you, but they use eco friendly waterless products to clean your car, truck, or SUV. Save green by going green!
- Sleep Safe Brand – Sleep Safe is a nonprofit business selling unique and attractive children’s nap mats. From the sale of these nap mats, Sleep Safe plans to help those in need by developing an innovative bag that will transform into a sleep shelter. Look out for the Sleep Safe nap mats coming to a church, daycare, or school near you soon!
- My Guys Grocery Delivery – Who is your guy? My Guys provides a personalized shopping experience by partnering you with a shopping pal. Do you need ripe avocados? Do you like your deli meat sliced very thin? Your personal “My Guy” will learn your preferences, shop for your groceries at your favorite store, and deliver them straight to your door with a smile.
The IncubaTOR class has been instrumental in sparking interest among students and the community for Ball High’s Innovation & Entrepreneurship Small Learning Community. We’re excited to announce that the IncubaTOR program will double in size next year! This fall 60 new students will begin the rigorous coursework that will introduce them to the realities of starting a business. They’ll have the opportunity to try, fail, and try again in an environment that offers a hands-on approach to teaching entrepreneurship. Growth of the program necessitates growth of resources for IncubaTOR. We’re looking for saavy business folks and philanthropists who are willing to support this worthwhile educational endeavor in the capacities listed below.
Make a Donation
Join the Board of Investors
GEF’s IncubaTOR Board of Investors play an incredibly important role in the program. Their first responsibility is hearing student teams’ pitches for funding for their minimum viable product at the mid-year point, then recommending modest investment amounts to the GEF Board of Directors. This pitch is intended to give students the resources they needed to test their business ideas in the marketplace. For example, it funded the materials needed to create a product prototype for one team.The Board of Investors also participate in “Pitch Night” which marks the end of the program for the year. Student teams present their business ideas and ask for the funding they need to continue operating their business for the next school year. If you’ve ever seen the show “Shark Tank,” then you can imagine the role of our Board of Investors at this event. Seats are available on the Board of Investors for a $1,000 contribution to IncubaTOR. Space is limited! Sign-up today!
A huge “THANK YOU” to the following individuals who served on the 2016-2017 Board of Investors:
- Brian Lepo, Albatross and Island Pier Club
- Sean O’Donohoe, The O’Donohoe Agency of Allstate Insurance
- Marcia Proctor, Director of Instructional Resources and Special Initiatives for Galveston Independent School District
- Eliza Quigley, Worth New York and Stella & Dot
- Ann Simmons, Dallas Properties
- Gina Spagnola, Galveston Regional Chamber of Commerce
- Carter Ware, Associate in Private Markets at Teacher Retirement System of Texas
- Billy Williams, GEF Representative and The Law Firm of Billy Williams
Become a Mentor or Coach
Mentors are needed to work with student teams throughout the course of the year. They guide students throughout the year by offering advice and serving as a sounding board for problems students encounter. Ideally, mentors are needed to dedicate approximately one scheduled hour per week of their time.
Coaches are subject matter experts needed to co-teach specific course modules. For example, an attorney who specializes in business law can provide real-world instruction that stretches beyond the established curriculum. Examples of topics where coaches are needed include value proposition, market sizing, marketing/positioning, web development, permitting, business law, sales planning, human resources processes, etc.