The Children’s Trust Grants $80K for Teen Entrepreneur Startups on The Underline

January 27 , 2021
by Meg Daly

 In this picture are High School students from The Children’s Trust Youth Advisory Committee in Tallahassee visiting two different universities in January 2020

Grant Empowers 10 High School Students to Launch Businesses in Brickell

Miami, Fla., Jan. 27, 2020 – The Underline’s Budding Entrepreneurs program has secured an $80,000 Innovation Grant from The Children’s Trust to foster innovation among high school students.  Together with Miami-Dade College and the Beacon Council, Friends of The Underline will facilitate the launch of 10 teen created businesses in its first phase, the Brickell Backyard.  

Students will first learn and experience a 16-week entrepreneurial class and then compete shark-tank style presentation to be one of 10 startups to kick off their new business in Brickell.  The Budding Entrepreneur program establishes a formative foundation for innovation, engagement and collaboration for high school students in underserved schools. Participating students will have a powerful platform to test and apply their creative vision and business concepts in the real world.

The program debuts in small business incubator kiosks on The Underline near the Brickell Metrorail Station. This urban location has heavy foot traffic from the more than 2 million patrons who transit through the area, plus neighboring residents and numerous businesses.  

“The Underline is thrilled to provide our bustling urban park to creative students to help them implement their entrepreneurial concepts and experience the challenges and opportunities of business startups firsthand,” said Meg Daly, founder and CEO of Friends of The Underline. “High schoolers will be given the tools needed to explore a commercial venture and better prepare for the journey to college.”

One of The Underline’s pillars is innovation. The Underline’s design with James Corner Field Operations, and the development of a cutting Technology Master Plan and Art Master Plan, demonstrate the organization’s deep commitment to world-class design, innovative community-based planning and progressive programming.

About Budding Entrepreneurs:
Participants are selected through Miami-Dade College’s Dual Enrollment program and in most cases are rising high school juniors and seniors participating in a summer internship. Miami-Dade College Wolfson campus targets high school campuses within their feeder pattern, particularly those that serve low-income populations, including: Booker T. Washington Senior High School, Miami Jackson Senior High School, Miami Edison Senior High School, Miami Springs Senior High School, and Coral Gables Senior High School.

Entrepreneurs begin the program with an entrepreneurship class in February, which enables them to address the start-to-finish creation and publication of a business plan framework. Members of the Beacon Council’s New Leaders Taskforce will serve as mentors to the teens throughout the creation of their business plans.

The winning/selected businesses will be launched Summer 2021 after students complete their business plans and the 10 top proposals are awarded grant funds for supplies. 

About The Children’s Trust:
The Children’s Trust is a dedicated source of revenue established by voter referendum to improve the lives of children and families in Miami-Dade County.

About The Underline

The Underline is a planned 10-mile urban trail, linear neighborhood park and public art destination that will span from the Miami River, north of Brickell Metrorail station, to Dadeland South. The Underline project will feature dedicated bike and pedestrian paths, amenities, art, programming, lighting, native vegetation, as well as safety features and improvements at road crossings. The Underline will be built in phases, the first of which will begin in the Brickell area. For more information, visit and @theunderlinemia on social media.