Inspire and mobilize the next generation of America’s innovators, inventors, entrepreneurs, engineers & manufacturing geniuses.

SEE delivers real-world entrepreneurship, invention and engineering into 3rd-8th classrooms. During the pivotal elementary and middle school years, SEE students work with professional and university mentors to conceive, design and manufacture real products, and build, fund and manage real startups around their inventions.

Yes, it’s as cool as it sounds. Because before they enter high school, SEE students have already been immersed in real product design, market research, CAD, 3D printing, finance and investor pitches, marketing and advertising, personal sales, Kickstarter campaigns, public relations, retail launches, and everything else involved in creating a real startup from scratch.

In academic terms, it’s all about experiential integration of STEM. Project-based learning. Making core studies exciting and relevant. Positive role modeling. Constructive failure. Confidence building. De-silio’ing of study areas. Leadership and teamwork. Critical thinking. Standards alignment. And so on.

In economic terms, it’s about workforce readiness. Next-generation skills. Graduates ready to innovate and create jobs. A generation that is more fluent in the language and process of business.

But for most of us, it's "I wish I had this when I was a kid". If you’re one of those people, and you want to be part of a program that makes a lasting and meaningful difference in the lives of tomorrow’s entrepreneurs, then take a look around our site-in-progress, and contact us to get involved as a mentor, a donor, or an advocate.

Innovation Alive Challenge


NEWS FLASH! SEE and national retailer Land of Nod partner to distribute SEE student-invented products nationally!

Take a look at photos and some of the actual Kickstarter SEE projects below–they tell the story best:

SEE Projects on Kickstarter

Scroll down to view more information

SEE exposes young students to a myriad of possible career paths, from product design, engineering, and manufacturing to marketing and entrepreneurship. Through integrated in person and virtual mentoring, SEE creates meaningful partnerships with community business leaders and university students, and positive role-modeling for young students from two generations of mentors. At the same time, schools elevate their visibility within the community and create a vital relationship with community leaders.

See Courses

SEE Courses:

There are currently four SEE courses, which can be implemented individually or in sequence beginning in third grade. Within each, students experience first-hand the possibilities (and constructive failures) that come with turning ideas and core studies into products and businesses. SEE is designed to be taught alongside a school’s existing curriculum or as standalone after-school/summer camps, and has been developed to establish and empower teachers as the primary instructional leaders for their grade, with integration of professional and university mentors at key inflection points. SEE staff trains and works with teachers throughout, ensuring a smooth process and creating more effective teachers.

Innovating / Prototyping: Creating “One of Something”

Materials science, engineering fundamentals, product development, designing in teams, sketching & CAD, rapid prototyping/3D printing, and more

Manufacturing Methods: Creating “Many of Something”

Materials, tools, processes (machining, casting, molding, 2D processes, 3D printing, composite manufacturing), assembly, manufacturing lines & flow, and more

Bootcamp Jr: Turnkey Startup

Market research, product development, product positioning, finance fundamentals, distribution, marketing, investment pitch development, go-to-market planning, sales, and more

The Incubator

Market research, product concepting, product pitch development, pricing strategy, technical design, manufacturing, crowdfunding, national go-to-market launch/promotion


Joe Born

CEO, Aiwa Corp. Former, founder, Digital Innovations, Neuros Technology. Prominent Chicago inventor and advocate for entrepreneurism education in Chicago. SEE mentor.

Gavin Campbell

Founder, Steelbridge Capital. Former Executive Director of the Civic Committee of the Commercial Club of Chicago. Former Chairman of Leadership Greater Chicago, Landmarks Illinois, and the Latino Chicago Theater Company. SEE mentor.

Alan Cook

President and CEO, Belle-V. Former co-founder, Lucky Litter, ActivityOne. SEE mentor.

Jennifer Fondrevay

Former Head of Worldwide Integrated Marketing, Nokia. VP Communications, Asurion. President, Women's Advertising Club of Chicago.

Devin Gross

CEO, Emmi Solutions. Former Director, First Consulting Group, (FCG), specializing in healthcare IT. Board of Directors, Emmi Solutions; Board of Trustees, Columbia College Chicago; Board.

Ankur Gupta

Partner, McDermott Will & Emery. Dedicated to Wish List Foundation, Hephzibah House Orphanage, March of Dimes, Chicago Cubs Charities, Blackhawks Charities, Katie's Kids, La Rabida Children's Hospital. SEE mentor.

John Hoesley

Group Head - Technology Banking, PrivateBank. Former Managing Director, Silicon Valley Bank. Partner, Prism Capital. Co-President, Illinois Venture Capital Association. President, Kellogg Alumni Club. SEE mentor.

April Lane

Executive Director, Catapult Chicago. Previously Associate Director, DePaul University Coleman Entrepreneurship Center. SEE mentor.

Josh Roberts

Managing Director & Team Lead, Technology Banking, PrivateBank. Former VP, Technology Investment Banking, RB Capital. ChicagoNEXT FinTech Council. SEE mentor.

Geoff Trukenbrod

Founder, Timshel. Former CFO, 2012 presidential campaign. Financial management in biotech and private equity. SEE mentor.
Contact Us

Contact Us:

Email us at with any questions or comments and fill out the form to the right to sign up for our mailing list.

I'm a: