StandWatch Academy (SWA) is an adventure leadership course that leverages the vast experience veterans and small business owners to teach young people how to conceptualize, launch, and lead their own social enterprises, issue campaigns, missions, and nonprofit organizations. The end result is a young person with the confidence, leadership ability, and basic entrepreneurial skills needed to create economic opportunities for themselves and their communities. We believe that this is the best way to create an entrepreneurial mindset in depressed areas where economic opportunity is lacking; one motivated young person at a time.
The SWA leadership course teaches entrepreneurship, business planning, team-building and leadership skills in an dynamic setting that encourages students to test their mental and physical endurance in a supportive environment that’s free of distractions. The courses teach the following:
- Leadership and followership
- Civics, history, and American exceptionalism
- Innovation, adaptability, and creativity
- Social entrepreneurship
Ultimately, our expeditions have two objectives; motivate and inspire the kids by introducing them to the areas of the country that have inspired others throughout our nation’s history while helping them complete a short business plan for their nonprofits or social enterprises. During our latest Rocky Mountain Expedition, fifteen students completed all of the research and prep work they needed to write their business plans, while seeing things they might never see again. Each student chose his or her issue and approach to “fixing” the problem, and they include things like improving the foster care system through a faith-based initiative, coming up with new ways to fight poverty and the opioid epidemic, and lifting people up by starting a clothing and apparel company that places its manufacturing shops and good jobs in disadvantaged communities across the United States.
We believe that every young person should know that, no matter what their economic condition, creating a job is infinitely better than finding a job. StandWatch Academy’s leadership course motivates and prepares young social entrepreneurs to bring about significant social change in a setting like no other. A lot of nonprofits strive for sustainable change. Our academy creates the leaders that can make that happen.