The Equity Incubator is an 8-week startup launch program for local entrepreneurs hosted by the
Lab for Entrepreneurship and Transformative Leadership at the Universities at
Shady Grove. The program is facilitated by University Startups.
We invite individuals who identify with a gender, racial/ethnic, or other identity which, historically, has not been dominant in receiving entrepreneurship support. We do this because we aim to create a collaborative, diverse cohort of entrepreneurs that can contribute unique perspectives in a supportive environment as we foster new venture formation and growth.

After a competitive application process, a selection of companies are chosen to participate. These organizations receive stipends for their work and are connected to an experienced entrepreneur mentor who met with them weekly.

The participating teams meet each week for sessions with isntructor Le-Marie Thompson, Director of Nonprofit Partnerships at University Startups. The group meets at the Biomedical Sciences and Engineering Building (BSE)
at the Universities at Shady Grove. In between sessions, they complete individual and group assignments on the University Startups online platform.

This program is funded in part by a grant from the Montgomery County Economic Development Corporation, The Blair Family Foundation, and others.


Fall 2022 Equity Incubator Showcase


Join us December 8th from 6:00 - 7:30 pm! Please RSVP here.

The event will also be live streamed on The Universities at Shady Grove Youtube page.

A flyer with information for the Fall 2022 Equity Incubator Showcase on December 8th, 6 to 7:30 pm at the Universities at Shady Grove, Building 4, Room G201

Fall 2022 Cohort

Amanda Bosland
Wise Cities
Easy Oat Burgers
What is Black
Marie Rose Photography
Room 242
Dragon Marketing
Jaliyaa Coffee
Nano Bio Fab
All Caps
Calmer Schools
Principally Yours
Juan Montana
HM Hospitality Solutions
Bremonique Artistry
Trippy Tacos
Spartan Hubbard Group
The Player Advocacy Project
Wachter Wellness Co
Spring 2023 Applications

If you would like to apply for the Equity Incubator Spring 2023 Cohort, please apply here by December 1st, 2022.

Dates: Wednesdays, February 1st through April 5th

  • Apply as a team or individually
  • 8 weeks of workshops and mentoring
  • $2,000 stipend per team
  • Early stage businesses are welcome to apply
  • Pitch to judges at the final competition for cash prizes
Fall 2021 Cohort

Event Recap Article


  • Code & Play (1st Prize)
  • MUSA (Audience Choice)
  • Dorothy's Place
  • Hubble Financial
  • Noble Uprising


  • Seema Alexander, Disruptive.CEO
  • Cedric Nwafor, ROOTS Africa
  • Tiffany Hosey, BuilDATAnalytics
  • Aaron Saunders, Clearly Innovative Inc.
  • Greg Merril, Adaptive Phage Therapeutics

Outcomes & Results:

  • 49% average increase in agreement with the statement "I feel like my identity/identities are represented in entrepreneurship/business".
  • 37% average increase in agreement with the statement "I am a good leader".
  • 60% woman-led teams
  • 71% non-white participants
  • $33,000 in additional revenue acorss teams
  • 500+ new users/customers across teams