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Taylor Tall x After School Matters
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Taylor Tall x After School Matters

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I hope everyone has been having a great summer so far and that you get a chance to enjoy these last few weeks before the busyness of fall inevitably resumes. I wanted to share a little about how I’ve spent part of my summer leading an After School Matters program on Building Your Brand with a focus on Ethical Entrepreneurship. AfterSchoolMatters® is a non-profit organization that provides life-changing after-school and summer program opportunities to nearly 19,000 Chicago high school teens each year. Teen participants are city of Chicago residents ranging in age 14-18. 

Chicago Fair Trade reached out to me at the beginning of summer to see if I would be interested in leading a six week pre-apprenticeship course on Building Your Brand | Ethical Entrepreneurship. I was so thrilled because entrepreneurship incubators and mentorships have been integral to my confidence and perseverance as an entrepreneur.

Recently, I've been looking for opportunities to connect with communities of youth, especially those already in the mindset of wanting to build businesses that incorporate positive impact. While it has been fun and rewarding to share my knowledge with the young adults, I have been blown away by their business ideas. 

  • A community center for stress relief where residents can practice hobbies that they don't have access to. 
  • A clothing line that both sells clothes and donates clothing to refugee communities 
  • A math tutoring service that focuses on teaching methods of stress management while gaining math skills. 

and many more that incorporate methods of addressing social and environmental needs in their business models. 

A screenshot of one of my student office hour meet ups.

Classroom set up for an exercise we did to prepare a business plan.

I also feel very grateful that this program has given me the chance to connect with other local businesses as guest speakers. Many thanks to those listed below: 

Kido Chicago

Bright Endeavors 

Ilava

Tulia's Artisan Gallery

Now that my program has wrapped up, I’ll be spending the rest of my summer getting as much time at the lakefront as I can and getting inspired for new collections. If you’re interested in getting involved with After School Matters, check out their website here or send me a message with any questions at hello@taylortall.com!