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Morgan Innovation and Entrepreneurship Center

The mission of this Center is to address disparities in business ownership rates and entrepreneurial success among people of color through research and expanded awareness and access to entrepreneurship education, experiences, and opportunities.

Generally, entrepreneurial activity has been declining in the United States as outlined in the 2017 Kauffman Index of Startup Activity.1  People of color and women face more significant and more persistent barriers to starting a firm.2  Minorities own half as many businesses as non-minorities do and minority businesses tend to start and stay smaller.3  Between 1996 and 2016, Latinos and Asians have grown significantly as a percentage of total new entrepreneurs, while Blacks have grown by one percentage point.4

Women are half as likely as men to own employer businesses5 and the gender gap has increased from 1996 to 2016 with women now representing less than 40% of new entrepreneurs.6

Adults without formal education (e.g., a high school or college degree) are much less likely to start a new venture.7 College graduates now account for the largest percentage of new entrepreneurs.8

The lack of education, experience, and access to capital are significant barriers to entrepreneurial endeavors for people of color and women.9

This Center is a resource for disadvantaged people of color and women who want to become more effective innovators and entrepreneurs. Through research, degrees (e.g, majors, minors, concentrations; BS, MS, PhD), courses, programs, events, conferences, and resources this Center offers a path to increase your odds of success in your entrepreneurial endeavors. For more information see right side of page.

This Center and its work is financially supported by: the PNC Foundation via a sub-award agreement with Howard University, Notre Dame University’s Urban Poverty Business Initiative, Hunt’s Memorial United Methodist Church (Mission Committee and Carroll’s-Gills Permanent Endowment Fund), and Mr. Michael Seibel.

1 Fairlie, R., Morelix, A., & Tareque, I. (2017). 2017 Kauffman index of startup activity.

2 Hwang, V. (2019). Entrepreneurial ecosystem building playbook 3.0. Kauffman Foundation. Retrieved April 1 from

3 Morelix, A., Hwang, V., & Tareque, I. S. (2017). Zero barriers: Three mega trends shaping the future of entrepreneurship (State of entrperenruship 2017, Issue.

4 See #1 above.

5 See #3 above.

6 See #1 above.

7 See #3

8 See #1

9 See #1, plus: Fairlie, R. W., & Robb, A. M. (2008). Race and entrepreneurial success. MIT Press., and Robb, A. M., & Fairlie, R. W. (2006). Access to financial capital among U.S. businesses: The case of African-American firms.