The Blackstone Foundation is investing $3 million for a Philadelphia version of its student startup incubator program, LaunchPad, the foundation announced today at an event with speakers like U.S. Senator Pat Toomey and Congressman Chaka Fattah. The training program, in partnership with the University City Science Center, will be open to all students of Philadelphia University and Temple University.
The initiative hopes to create 100 student ventures over the next five years, said Blackstone Group CEO Stephen Schwarzman, who actually grew up in Huntingdon Valley and attended Abington Senior High School. Blackstone LaunchPad has outposts in Miami, Northeast Ohio and Detroit.
During the event, both Toomey and Fattah spoke of the value that entrepreneurs bring to the region.
“It’s just a a fact that entrepreneurs raise our standard of living,” said Toomey, who considers himself a serial entrepreneur (he started his first business — mowing lawns — when he was in high school).