Marc Ecko Is Designing Tomorrow's Fashion Entrepreneurs

When you think of Marc Ecko, you probably think of fashion. (And, if you're into fashion, you probably think of urban wear.) But, Ecko's got a plan to help shepherd in the next generation of creative entrepreneurs, who—like himself—can make their mark as designers and business impresarios.

Interestingly, according to a story at, Ecko himself dropped out of high school in New Jersey. He built a design empire from the seeds of an inspiring photo book on subway art that he got in middle school. Through his Sweat Equity Enterprises (SEE), he wants to help fuel the creative spark in students from low-income families. SEE participants become essentially apprentices, working outside of school hours with fashion industry companies to get ideas and learn the business.
[T]he public education system fails too many students whose passions don't fit into traditional education fields. Giving creative students a hands-on outlet for experimentation with a craft is mostly lacking for middle- and high-school students. And even providing that for high schoolers can be too late to loose a potential designer or lifelong learner. "If we hit a kid in eighth grade, and he's tuned out, it's a rap for him," Ecko says.
Ecko's starting to sound a bit like Ken Robinson. That's probably a good thing.

Photo (cc) via Flickr user Business Innovation Factory.