Business

Knight invests in six projects aimed at advancing Miami tech, entrepreneurship

Gabriel Streeter, Shekeyna Walker, Amauri Stratford, Kenya Burnes, Kaniya Smith, Jennigfer Jean-Jacques have been working with aquaponics in their school and participated in a booth at the Miami Mini Maker Faire last year. This year, the Maker Faire is expanding. It will be April 8-9 at Miami Dade College.
Gabriel Streeter, Shekeyna Walker, Amauri Stratford, Kenya Burnes, Kaniya Smith, Jennigfer Jean-Jacques have been working with aquaponics in their school and participated in a booth at the Miami Mini Maker Faire last year. This year, the Maker Faire is expanding. It will be April 8-9 at Miami Dade College.

The John S. and James L. Knight Foundation on Tuesday announced new funding for six projects aimed at advancing Miami as an inclusive tech and innovation hub, from web development scholarships for low-income students to Miami’s first full-scale Maker Faire. The grants total $741,000.

Here are the projects receiving funding:

Digital Grass ($186,000) – Digital Grass aims to strengthen the region’s startup community by sharing the stories of South Florida’s entrepreneurs and hosting programs that educate entrepreneurs on topics related to business development.

International Women’s Forum ($105,000) – A two-day Executive Development Roundtable workshop that aims to help Miami’s rising female leaders and entrepreneurs will take place this summer. The program will focus on scaling an endeavor, building leadership skills, increasing confidence and self-efficacy and addressing risk aversion.

Miami Made ($75,000) – Miami Made supports Miami’s startup community by connecting startup founders through a series of events — including themed dinners, breakfast meetups and member-led outings — and creates a network of resources focused on helping founders thrive.

MANO ($125,000) – MANO fosters connection among Miami’s artists, entrepreneurs and tinkerers through the Miami’s first full-scale Maker Faire April 8-9 at Miami Dade College, featuring inventions and exhibits. After three years of presenting the Miami Mini Maker Faire, the event is now one of only 30 featured Maker Faires in the world. Purchase tickets for the Maker Faire Miami at miami.makerfaire.com.

NewCo ($175,000) – A one-day conference will promote awareness of emerging local employment and business opportunities. It will combine the style of an artist open studio with the feel of a music festival and connect Miami's growing entrepreneurial class with established businesses and budding startups.

Wyncode ($75,000) – Wyncode will offer full scholarships to low-income and under-represented minority students for the company’s 10-week web development boot camp teaching computer programming. After the course, students will take part in a three-month paid technical internship at CareCloud, Clutch Prep, DVLPER, Kipu Systems, Trim Agency or Watsco Ventures. Wyncode is now accepting scholarship applications to join the April 24 cohort. Visit wyncode.co/futureleaders.

“These projects ... foster local talent by supporting entrepreneurs of all kinds, while creating new pathways for innovators from under-represented groups to access resources and connect with Miami’s wider innovation community,” said Matt Haggman, Knight Foundation program director for Miami.

Over the past four years Knight has made more than 200 investments totalling more than $25 million in entrepreneurship in South Florida.

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