The DEC Network Launches Second BIG iDEA DALLAS Entrepreneurial Program

The DEC Network, in partnership with Charles Schwab, is putting out a call for founders of color to apply for its BIG IDEA DALLAS cohort by May 16. It calls the seven-week program a "pre-step" in a founder's journey.

The DEC Network is looking to help innovators make the first step in their entrepreneurial journey.

The Dallas-based entrepreneurial support organization, in partnership with Charles Schwab, has put out a call for founders of color to apply for its second BIG iDEA DALLAS cohort. Applications are due soon, by May 16.

“We know that less than 5% of startup funding is invested in underrepresented groups, and less than 3% of those funded are women-owned startups,” said Demetra Brown, senior director of The DEC Network, during last year’s capstone event. “Programs like BIG iDEA Dallas that are focused on helping Black entrepreneurs and other underrepresented groups grow have a big impact on our entrepreneurial ecosystem, which is the backbone of business in Dallas-Fort Worth.”

Seven-week program is ‘pre-step’ for founders

Launched last year out of The DEC Networks’ outpost in southern Dallas, BIG iDEA is a seven-week program that it calls a “pre-step” in a founder’s journey. The program, which caps off with a business pitch competition, includes mentoring in areas like market research and competitive analysis.

At least year’s pitch competition, Adaya Beauty and its founder Chelsy Gray took home the top prize of $3,500, while each participant received a $250 micro loan. This year, The DEC Network says $6,500 in funding is up for grabs.

The program kicks off on June 7 and runs through July 26.

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