Interested in Starting or Running Your Own Business?
Interested in Learning More About What It Takes to Be a Professional in Today’s World?

Attend NFTE’s second bi-annual Own It Summit: Unleash Your Future and meet professionals and other young and future entrepreneurs from across the globe. This virtual event will be a career expo and merged networking session and that allows students to gain insights from various professionals and entrepreneurs and develop their networking skills with diverse professionals. In small breakout rooms, volunteers will share their expertise and/or professional journey based on a specific topic, as well as answer questions from students. There will also be a student raffle for various gift cards.


Thursday, February 24, 2022

1:00-2:15 pm EDT


1:00 PM – 1:10 PM Welcome + Expectations + Warm Up Activity (10 mins)

1:10 PM – 2:05 PM Breakout Rooms based on Topic (2 rotations )

  • Small Group Introductions
  • Volunteers will share “My Professional Journey” in 5 mins or less (3 significant moments that led volunteers to where they are today)
  • Student/Question Answer Portion

2:05 PM – 2:15 PM Wrap Up/Debrief/Raffle (10 mins)

TOPIC: Does high school really help in the real world?
Room A
Room B
  • Roohi Afza, Quality Lead & Development Expert, Sap Labs India, from Bangalore, Karnataka, India
  • Amylah Charles, Founder, Curlycrownz Haircare, from Los Angeles, CA


TOPIC: What is it like being a NFTE alum who has started their own business?
  • Antonia Castro, Social Enterprise & Entrepreneurship Manager, A Place Called Home, from Los Angeles, CA
  • Jasmine Lawrence, Founder, EDEN BodyWorks, from San Francisco, CA


TOPIC: How can I become a better public speaker?
Room A
  • Peter Cummings, Vocal and Presentation Performance Coach, Cummings Attractions, from North Miami Beach, FL
  • Cristina Tye, Senior Account Executive – Midmarket, SAP America, from New York, NY
Room B
  • Tyler Bradshaw, Vice President – Financial Wellness & Engagement, MetLife, from New York, NY
  • Madelyn Jackson, MS, P.A.C.A., from Chicago, IL


TOPIC: How do I deal with some of the major struggles that come with being an entrepreneur?
Room A
  • Suman Kapur, CEO, Well Balanced Solutions, from Washington, DC
  • Adrienne Palmer, Founder, Board Member, Advisor, Insite Interactive, from Dallas, TX
Room B
  • Michelle Robinson, Owner, DEMIblue, from St. Louis, MO
  • Eddie Webber, Owner, Fitness Coaching By Design, from Maywood, IL
Room C
  • Brent Freeman, Founder & President, Stealth Venture Labs, from San Francisco, CA
  • Maurice James, Owner, Founder and President of Mojo Pictures, from Los Angeles, CA


TOPIC: How do I land a great internship to launch my professional career?
Room A
  • Tanisha Luckett, Founder/President, HenRose Cares, from St. Louis, MO
  • Judy Stewart, CEO, Founder, Creative Sense, Inc., from Stamford, CT
Room B
  • Michelle Agunloye, Community Relations Market Manger, Citi, from Chicago, IL
  • Raquel Lee, Assistant Vice President / Apps Dev Sr. Programmer Analyst, Citi, from Tampa, FL
TOPIC: What are professional lessons I wish I knew as a teenager?
Room A
Room B
Room C
TOPIC: What is like to be a Asian American or Pacific Islander person in leadership, corporate America, or entrepreneurship? 
  • Kiran Sanka, Partner, VFour Ventures LLC, from Frisco, TX
  • Lori Shao, CEO, Finli Inc, from Los Angeles, CA


TOPIC: What is like to be a Black person in leadership, corporate America, or entrepreneurship? 
Room A
Room B
  • Taa Grays, Vice President & Associate General Counsel – Information Governance, MetLife, from New York, NY
  • Wendi Levy Kaaya, Co-owner/founder, Mixed Chicks, from Canoga Park, CA
Room C
  • Tara Levy, Creator/ Business Owner, I Am Black Art, from Chicago, IL
  • Taylor Thompson, Supplier DEI and Social Impact Leader, Intuit, from Mountain View, CA


TOPIC: What is like to be a woman in leadership or entrepreneurship?
Room A
Room B
  • Elana Kipp, VP, Data and Technology, Advantage Solutions, from Chicago, IL
  • Twanna Toliver, Creative Business Coach and Founder, She Creates Collective, from New York, NY
Room C
  • Chante Goodwin, President and CEO of Your Way IT Solutions, LLC, from Washington D.C.
  • Carla Van Walsum, Ph.D, Holsitic Pyschologist at Heartbased Solutions, LLC, from Miami Beach, FL


TOPIC: What is like to be Latinx in leadership, corporate America, or entrepreneurship?


TOPIC: What is it like starting your first job?
Room A
  • Himanshi Goel, Data Analytics Consultant, SAP Labs India Pvt. Ltd., from Delhi, India
  • Megan Wood, Manager, Associate Development Program, Silicon Valley Bank from Newton, MA
Room B
  • Chris Dewhurst, VP & Relationship Manager, Citizens Business Bank, from Orange, CA
  • Anitha Raman, Senior Director, Slalom Consulting, from Chicago, IL
Room C
  • Natina Gurley, Diversity & Inclusion Communications Specialist, Zuora, from Redwood City, CA
  • Dwayne Hunter-Parker, Sale Developmental Representative, Zuora, from Boston, MA


TOPIC: How do you connect social justice and entrepreneurship?   
  • Komal Ahmad, Founder, Copia, from San Francisco, CA
  • Kavell Brown, Partnerships Manager, Social Impact, LinkedIn, from San Francisco, CA


TOPIC: What are professional lessons I wish I knew as a teenager?



Students and teachers, to learn more about what your role will be, click the buttons below.

Note: You will also receive this prep guide when you complete your registration.


Is there any cost to this summit?

No, the Own It Summit is free to any student participating in an entrepreneurship class associated with NFTE.

Will I be able to choose the breakout rooms I go to?

Yes, choose 2 breakout room topics you are interested in and a 3rd as a backup posted on the Speaker Tab of this page. A week before the Own It Summit, short bios and headshots for each of the professionals or entrepreneurs will be available. You’ll be able to read about each entrepreneur or professional, and then during the Own It Summit, the NFTE team will instruct you to choose your first breakout room. After the first rotation, the NFTE team will close the breakout rooms and instruct you to choose and enter your second breakout room.

Can I choose a different breakout room after the session starts?

No, once you enter a breakout room, you should stay in that room with that group of students and entrepreneurs or professionals. Get to know different people, learn from entrepreneurs or professionals, and ask questions. You’ll be able to switch to another room after the 25-minute rotation is over.

Will there be any prizes or incentives for students?

At the end of the session, there will be a raffle for students. Every student that attends will be entered in the raffle; however, the more you participate, the greater your chances of winning. Raffle winners MUST be present at the end of the session to receive their prize. Prizes will be various gift cards.

How do I stay in touch with any of the entrepreneurs or professionals I met during the session?

Email the NFTE team to receive the email addresses of any of the entrepreneurs at the Own It Summit.

Can I invite my friends?

Yes, if they are a part of your entrepreneurship class, and they register on the registration form.

Where do I check to see if I am registered?

After you have signed up, you should receive an email confirming within 3 business days that you signed up with prep materials and a calendar invite with Zoom information. If you are a student or teacher that does not receive this, please contact Ann Nguyen or Cheyanne Ornelas.

How do I sign up?

If you are a student, sign up here. There, you will be able enter in all your information in order to receive information to attend the event.

If you are an entrepreneur or professional looking to volunteer, unfortunately, the deadline to sign up has closed. However, you can email Anthony Curtis to allow us to keep you in mind for future opportunities!

Who can I contact if I have any additional questions?

Students and Teachers can contact Ann Nguyen, NFTE’s Volunteer Programs Associate, and volunteers can contact Anthony Curtis, NFTE’s Volunteer Programs Manager.

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