YEA! Web Masthead

 Harford County Young Entrepreneurs Academy (YEA!)

Building the Next Generation of Harford County Leaders and Business Owners 

About the Academy

The Young Entrepreneurs Academy (YEA!) teaches middle and high school go-getters how to start and run their own, REAL businesses.

The Harford County chapter is proud to have completed its 2016-2017 inaugural year with ten graduates and CEOs; and we are equally excited to be able to offer yet another year of entrepreneurial opportunity to our community in 2017-2018.
Celebrating the Spirit of Enterprise and Innovation
Founded in 2004 at the University of Rochester with support from the Kauffman Foundation, YEA! has helped more than 4,000 students nationwide launch over 3,000 businesses and social movements.
Make a Job—Don’t Just Take a Job!

YEA! guides students through the process of fulfilling their very own American dream. By bridging the business and educational communities students are taught by a trained instructor, and are exposed to guest lecturers, successful entrepreneurs and mentors. Over the course of the program, students:

  • Brainstorm business ideas
  • Write a business plan
  • Interact with business professionals
  • Attend field trips for a behind-the-scenes look at local businesses
  • Pitch their business plan to local investors for startup funding and the opportunity to advance to regional and national competitions
  • Launch and run their own business or social movement
  • Graduate from the program with lifelong leadership and business skills

 2017-2018 Harford County YEA! Calendar

YEA! classes meet mid-October through April, for three hours weekly. Classes are held every Tuesday (with some exceptions) at the Harford County Public Library, Abingdon branch. There are no classes during regular school holidays and recesses.
08/15/2017– YEA! Information Session at 5:30pm at the Harford County Chamber of Commerce
09/15/2017– YEA! National Application Deadline (online applications)
09/21/2017– YEA! Information Session at 5:30pm at the Harford County Chamber of Commerce
09/29/2017– YEA! Harford County Application Deadline (printed physical application)
10/17/2017– Admitted Student & Parent Orientation
10/24/2017– Weekly Classes Begin
12/12/2017– CEO Round-table Event
12/26/2017– Winter Break- NO CLASS
03/27/2018– YEA! Investor Panel Presentations- The GROUNDFloor in HDG
04/03/2018– YEA! Graduation
05/02/2018 through 05/05/2018– 10th Anniversary Saunders Scholars Competition & Conference (Rochester, NY)

Student Selection Process

YEA! welcomes applications from all students in grades 6-12 who are between 11 and 18 years old. Students interested in starting their own, real businesses may apply for acceptance into the program by completing the application, which includes an essay and short-answer questions, school transcripts and letter of recommendation.

Once the completed application is received, students may be invited to attend an in-person interview. Acceptance into the program is based on all aspects of the completed application as well as the personal interview. Prior business experience is not required, nor is it required to have a business idea prior to the start of class.


Start as a student, finish as a CEO! Students ages 11 to 18 and in grades six through 12 are eligible to apply. This program offers students the chance to:

  • Develop hands-on entrepreneurial experience to launch their own business or social movement
  • Connect with local entrepreneurs
  • Pitch to a panel of investors for startup funding
  • Gain confidence in their ideas, abilities and presentation skills

Check out pictures from the 2016-2017 class of the Harford County Young Entrepreneurs Academy

2017-2018 Harford County YEA! Frequently Asked Questions

Get Involved

Share your business wisdom with aspiring young entrepreneurs and help them get started on the path to success! We’re seeking expert professionals to volunteer their time as guest speakers, mentors, investors, graphic designers, field trip hosts, business plan reviewers, and more. The time YEA! students spend with adults who encourage their futures is invaluable, and you can play an important role in guiding our future leaders.

If you are interested in getting involved with YEA! and being inspired by your community’s great young minds, contact the Harford County Chamber at 410-838-2020


YEA! USA is made possible by the Kauffman Foundation, U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation and the E. Philip Saunders Foundation. We also thank our national supporters, Sam’s Club and Southwest Airlines.

Our local Harford County Young Entrepreneurs Academy continues to be funded and supported by a multitude of local business in Maryland, as well as national organziations! If your organization is interested in learning how you can sponsor the Harford County YEA! program, contact Heather at

Thank you to our 2017-2018 Harford County YEA! Sponsors

Sponsor Logo 1

2017-2018 Sponsors 2

Thank you to our 2017-2018 Harford County YEA! Promotional Partners

Promo Partners Logos 1

Thank you to our 2016-2017 Harford County YEA! Sponsors

2016-2017 YEA sponsors


Contact Us
For more information, call 410-838-2020 or email Heather at