Pathway to Entrepreneurship

HOUSTON – Did you know that African-Americans have been behind the curve ball in the area of entrepreneurship via systemic forms of oppression? When reviewing our history, once our ancestors were freed from the bounds of slavery, very few employers wanted to hire them to complete the same work that was completed months prior for free.

What did the government do to provide shelter and income to this newly freed population of African-Americans needing employment and basic shelter? The answer is simple, the government created, “Projects,”, or “Wards,” as a quick remedy to solve this pressing problem.

These “Projects or Wards,” were implemented via the inner cities across America in addition to Welfare and Section Eight Systems that provided gateways of dependence and induced sloth. Simultaneously, many African-Americans became disgusted by these co-dependent governmental practices and decided to delve into their own creativity to become world class entrepreneurs.

How is this relevant to the curriculum taught at Booker T. Washington High School?

Booker T. Washington instructor, Mrs. Valerie D. Payne, has taken our history, merged it with the reality of our present, and is providing multiple pathways for our students of color to achieve the American Dream.

These pathways include teaching our minority students about entrepreneurship via hands on projects as simple as selling cookies to peers throughout the entire school year. By teaching our students how to build a business, our students have learned the entire cost analysis process: What does it cost to purchase product (cooking oven and dough)? How does the cost of the packaging (bags) affect the profit? They have also learned how to bake the product, how to market the product, how to make the actual sale to their peers, and how to increase the profit margin regarding the bottom line.

Throughout this entire learning experiment, Mrs. Payne, also provides instruction in a variety of skill sets and competencies like: self-management, effective communication skills, personal finance, business finance, public speaking, listening skills, personal values, as well as activities that foster the development of etiquette skills.

To pretend that race issues are not present in the traditional forms of education and in obtaining jobs in corporate America as evidenced by our past, that would not be in the vein of full disclosure; Nor would we be providing the truth about the state of our current society, and this would be a disservice to our students.

Mrs. Payne’s creative teaching practices are destroying glass ceilings and invisible barriers that, in the past, have separated women and minorities from earning true freedom in America via entrepreneurship. Presenting all options to our students of color, here at Booker T. Washington High School, is highly important, and her passion and hard work is greatly appreciated.

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October 16, 2023, HOUSTON, TX – Congressional Candidate Amanda Edwards has raised over $1 million in less than 4 months, a substantial sum that helps bolster the frontrunner status of the former At-Large Houston City Council Member in her bid for U.S. Congress. Edwards raised over $433,000 in Q3 of 2023. This strong Q3 report expands on a successful Q2 where Edwards announced just 11 days after declaring her candidacy that she had raised over $600,000. With over $829,000 in cash-on-hand at the end of the September 30th financial reporting period, Edwards proves again that she is the clear frontrunner in the race. “I am beyond grateful for the strong outpouring of support that will help me to win this race and serve the incredible people of the 18th Congressional District,” said Edwards. “We are at a critical juncture in our nation’s trajectory, and we need to send servant leaders to Congress who can deliver the results the community deserves. The strong support from our supporters will help us to cultivate an 18th Congressional District where everyone in it can thrive.” Edwards said. “Amanda understands the challenges that the hard-working folks of the 18th Congressional District face because she has never lost sight of who she is or where she comes from; she was born and raised right here in the 18th Congressional District of Houston,” said Kathryn McNiel, spokesperson for Edwards’ campaign. Edwards has been endorsed by Higher Heights PAC, Collective PAC, Krimson PAC, and the Brady PAC. She has also been supported by Beto O’Rourke, among many others. About Amanda: Amanda is a native Houstonian, attorney and former At-Large Houston City Council Member. Amanda is a graduate of Eisenhower High School in Aldine ISD. Edwards earned a B.A. from Emory University and a J.D. from Harvard Law School. Edwards practiced law at Vinson & Elkins LLP and Bracewell LLP before entering public service. Edwards is a life-long member of St. Monica Catholic Church in Acres Homes. For more information, please visit

As September 13th rolls around, we extend our warmest birthday wishes to the creative powerhouse, Tyler Perry, a man whose indomitable spirit and groundbreaking work have left an indelible mark on the world of entertainment. With his multifaceted talents as an actor, playwright, screenwriter, producer, and director, Tyler Perry has not only entertained but also inspired audiences worldwide, particularly within the African-American community, where his influence and role have been nothing short of powerful. Born in New Orleans, Louisiana, in 1969, Tyler Perry’s journey to stardom was a path riddled with adversity. Raised in a turbulent household, he found refuge in writing, using it as a therapeutic outlet. This period of introspection gave rise to one of his most iconic creations, Madea, a vivacious, no-nonsense grandmother who would later become a beloved figure in Perry’s works, offering a unique blend of humor and profound life lessons. Despite facing numerous challenges, including rejection and financial struggles, Perry’s determination and unwavering belief in his abilities propelled him forward. In 1992, he staged his first play, “I Know I’ve Been Changed,” which, although met with limited success, was a pivotal moment in his career. Unfazed by initial setbacks, Perry continued to hone his craft, and by 1998, he had successfully produced a string of stage plays that showcased his storytelling prowess.

Calling all teenage student-athletes! If you have dreams of playing college soccer and wish to represent an HBCU, the HBCU ID Camp is your golden opportunity. From 8 am to 5 pm on November 11-12, Houston Sports Park will transform into a hub for aspiring male and female soccer players. Coaches from HBCUs across the nation will be present to evaluate, scout, and offer valuable feedback. Moreover, they might even spot the next soccer prodigy to join their collegiate soccer programs. This camp is not just about honing your soccer skills but also a chance to connect with the HBCU soccer community. You’ll learn the ins and outs of what it takes to excel on the field and in the classroom, which is crucial for a college athlete. The HBCU ID Camp is an excellent platform to network with coaches, learn from experienced athletes, and take the first steps toward your college soccer journey. To secure your spot at this incredible event, don’t forget to register [here](insert registration link). Space is limited to 120 participants, so make sure to reserve your place before it’s too late. It’s time to turn your dreams of playing college soccer into a reality.

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