Launchpad Center

Teen Entrepreneurship Programs in Collaboration with UC San Diego's Rady School of Management


Launchpad inspires teens to innovate and benefit our greater community by creating enduring business ideas, connections, and increasing social mobility.

We introduce high school students to entrepreneurial thinking by utilizing the resources of the Rady School of Management, UC San Diego, and our startup community. This program builds bridges between teens, CEOs, city officials, educators, entrepreneurs, and the university. We aim to match talent with opportunity.

Launchpad endeavors to provide youth entrepreneurship education to every student, and to give those that step forward access to the ecosystem to empower and support them now and in the future. With studies showing as many as 46% of jobs for people 30 years of age and under being in the form of independent contractor roles, the need for the entrepreneurial mindset, skills, competencies, and resilience has never been greater.

Launchpad was founded in 2016 by Tina Klein, Ph.D.



Upcoming Programs

Startup Summer School 2021

Fundamentals of Entrepreneurship

Two Sessions (9:00 am - 12:00 pm PST):

  1. June 28 - July 9, 2021

  2. July 26 - August 6, 2021

Curious about entrepreneurship but not sure where to start?

This virtual two-week course is designed for passionate high school entrepreneurs motivated to explore what it takes to create their own businesses.

From developing marketing, research, and leadership skills to mastering entrepreneurial strategy and idea pitching, this course follows UCSD Rady School’s successful approach to commercializing innovation.

  • Maximum 35 participants

  • $1,495

  • Program fee includes instruction, materials, and online entrepreneurship simulation

Click here for more details.

Coming This Fall

Social Impact & Innovation

~ Earn 3 units of UCSD pre college credit ~

September 25 - November 27, 2021

(Saturdays 9:00 am - 12:00 pm PST)

Are you excited to create novel solutions that improve the lives of others?
This 10-week course introduces the key qualities of social innovation, social enterprise, and social entrepreneurs. We apply the design thinking process to gain insight into users, the challenges they face, their needs, as well as their perspectives, experiences, and motivations.
Student teams will be mentored by UC San Diego’s Rady School of Management MBA students to generate a deep understanding of problems and potential solutions. This is the first course in the Social Impact and Innovation series.
  • Maximum 20 participants

  • $1,895

  • Program fee includes instruction, materials, and UCSD pre college credit

Click here for more details.

We are BIG NEWS!

  • Our recent program at the Malcom X Library was featured by San Diego's NBC 7.

  • Launchpad's founder Dr. Tina Klein was interviewed for a special on Joanie Connell's "Connected Women of Influence."

Launchpad Alum Wins International Entrepreneurship Competition

Using skills developed at Launchpad, Brett Kim onboards two classmates to develop Oikku: an app which builds and facilitates inclusive communities for people entering the workforce.

The team was awarded funding to further develop app by the Network for Teaching Entrepreneurship (NFTE) World Series of Innovation.

Check out the full article here!


“The kids were completely off the charts excited about what they accomplished and how empowered they felt to be speaking with “real-life business people." We had a couple breakdowns for some kids that were devastatingly nervous to present, but once they got up there they were all smiles coming to me afterwards telling me that this assignment has done “wonders” for their confidence. The results have been amazing. This event really brought out the adult professional in these kids…it’s going to have an impact for a long time."

- Parker Bush, Entrepreneurship and Innovation Instructor, San Diego Jewish Academy

"I recently had the pleasure of serving as one of the judges of a business plan competition among students of Francis Parker School. I actually forgot that I was observing high school students, as their level of preparation, thoughtfulness, creativity and presentation skills were akin to those seeking an MBA. The session made me realize how valuable this type of experience is for young eager minds. I wish I had had this type of early exposure and training while I was in high school. Launchpad is a wonderful resource, and I have no doubt that the experience will benefit these young adults as they approach college and ultimately their careers."

- Lisa Walters, Hoffert CFO, Daré Bioscience

“I liked the simulation and the exposure to this field. The simulation proved to test critical thinking problem solving skills within me, and the exposure showed me what a snippet of college would look like.”

-J., Francis Parker School student

“I enjoyed the speakers most of all, they provided interesting insight into the world of entrepreneurship and business.”

-H., Francis Parker School student