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The mission of the Surge Institute is to educate and develop leaders of color who create transformative change for young people, their families, and our broader communities. Our most entrepreneurial-minded alumni desire and imagine opportunities where they can create such change outside of the system, something of their very own. But every entrepreneur needs a boost in moving their idea toward impact.

The Surge Institute is proud to offer Surge Angels, a program providing Surge Alumni with the resources and start-up support to build out their ventures, and affect the change they seek.

Opportunity. Surge Angels offers participants an opportunity to close the gap between ideas, business-preparedness, and implementation. Getting started is always the hardest part, and there are so many factors and intricate in-and-outs to making our dreams a reality. A successful business venture needs to begin from a place of knowledge, confidence, and support. This is where the Surge Angels program comes in.

Support. Surge Angels is a seven-month long program with a cohort of Surge Alumni. Inidividual participants or teams will be guided and supported in business essentials such as strategic planning, financial understanding, operational training, and marketing insight. They will be matched with executive coaches with entrepreneurship experience. They will also earn startup capital and tailored support for each alum’s entrepreneurial enterprise.

Confidence. At the end of the program, each participant or team will present their business proposals to an investment committee. This public showcase is more than just a “test drive” of an alum’s concept, but an opportunity for real investment, as well as a place to make connections with investors and connectors with regional, national, and even global reach.

Someday is Now. For those alums dreaming about a way to turn their Capstone or Freedom Dreams project into reality, this is your chance. For those who have wanted support to workshop their idea, this is the place. For those who want to focus and be held accountable to pursuing your dream, this is the time.

Surge Angels exists to educate and prepare rising entrepreneurs and business leaders of color in education. More specifically, these entrepreneurial go-getters, all share an important core goal. These leaders of the near future, the vanguard of innovative educational solutions, all aim to increase both high-quality education options and access for low-income children. This is also the core value of Surge Institute, and Surge Angels is the means to accelerate this progressive goal. Together, we can work to ensure a brighter future for our communities.

Surge Angels is a program rooted in rigorous hard work, but with our accelerator that means big potential for success.


The application process for the Surge Angels Program is straightforward and simple. This fellowship is open to all Surge alumni who completed programming before July 2022. The program will build new bonds of shared learning and experience among Surge Alumni. Unlocking the next step toward business leadership and the implementation of your creative ideation is only a click away.

2022 – 2023 PROGRAM DATES

  • July 13 – July 15 – In-Person Gathering, Minneapolis
  • August 13, 10am – 3pm CT – Virtual Gathering
  • September 8 – September 10 – In-Person Gathering, Memphis
  • October 8, 10am – 3pm CT – Virtual Gathering
  • November 12, 10am – 3pm CT – Virtual Gathering
  • January 2023 In-Person Gathering, Pitch Night, Date and Location TBD

*Executive Coaching Throughout


A: The Surge Angels program is open to all Surge Alumni from the Fellowship or Academy programs who graduate in or before July 2022. Alums can be joined by up to two co-founders, neither of which must be a Surge alum.

A: The 2022 cohort is focused on early-stage ventures, those that are in the planning, pilot, or pre-launch stage. Ventures should be focused on education/families/communities of color. Ventures can be either for-profit or nonprofit. They can be connected to your Freedom Dreams or Capstone project, but do not need to be. Applicants should be actively moving to explore the concept with the aspiration to pursue the initiative on a full-time basis.

The next Surge Angels cohort will focus on acceleration of ventures that have already begun. The approximate time frame for that cohort is summer 2023.

A: For the 2022 cohort, we can accept as many qualified applicants or teams who are ready. We estimate a cohort size of 10-15 alums.

A: Applications will open on Monday, May 16th, 2022, and remain open until Friday, May 27th, 2022. Applications may be accessed here.

A: The program is seven months long, from July 2022 – January 2023. The program includes 3 in-person gatherings and 3 virtual gatherings. Attendance is mandatory for all events.

A: Depending on the size of the cohort, Surge will make angel investments in the top initiatives. The total investment pool is estimated at $100,000.

A: This cohort of Surge Angels has been supported by the Osa Foundation and the Comcast Foundation.

A: The cohort’s initial gathering will take place in Minneapolis Wednesday, July 13th, 2022 – Friday July 15th, 2022 (including an optional visit to Prince’s Paisley Park studios!).