Our mission is to expose youth to the business world through our experiential learning model, fostering the development of business literacy and leadership skills necessary to be more successful in school and in life. We teach students about the world of business one merger and acquisition at a time.
High school students from underserved and diversity backgrounds are rarely given the opportunity to learn about and pursue a career in business. Students who participate in YAB’s programs boast a 98 percent high school graduation rate with many pursuing degrees at two- and four-year colleges, compared to a rate of 68 percent in some areas of the country.
Youth About Business (YAB) enables high school students from all backgrounds to experience the world of business in a stimulating and interactive environment and gain access to positive role models in the world of business and finance. As a result, YAB’s students escape the cycle of "hopelessness" that occurs far too often in communities across America. In addition, our alumni help companies overcome their build healthy pipelines of diverse talent who can transition seamlessly from student to corporate culture with a deep understanding of business and finance.
YAB was founded as a project of Creating an Environment of Success (CES), a Tennessee based 501(c)3 not-for-profit corporation in 1992. After 17 years, program founder, Sam Kirk, decided to leave the corporate sector in order to create one of the most innovative leadership training programs to help expose young people to options in business and industry.
The program began with only seven student participants as an entrepreneurial training program to prepare students with all the mechanics of how to successfully run a business.
Sam's dedication to Youth About Business eventually led to the development of its cornerstone program, the Youth About Business Summer Business Camp, in 1999. The Summer Business Camp has become the national component that serves as the entry point into Youth About Business. YAB currently operates in Tennessee, New York, Illinois, Georgia and Texas, and will soon expand into the Western and Mid-Atlantic regions. Since the founding of Youth About Business, more than 7,000 students have participated in one or more of its educational components. The organization's student participants have a 98% graduation rate.