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SuitUp Students Become Trend-Setting CEOs for Milk Bar

Students and Milk Bar Coaches in a SuitUp business competition


What better way to use a sweet tooth than for good?

This week, underserved students from across the country will be participating in a virtual SuitUp business competition where their task will be simple: create a new product for Milk Bar. To support them, corporate executives from the company itself will coach them through the marketing, strategy, finance, and design of their delicious creations. The week will culminate in a final pitch session where judges will determine a winner. Milk Bar’s CEO Christina Tosi and the Director of Culinary Operations, Anna McGorman will even make an appearance!

While many students may be familiar with the addicting birthday treats and cake truffles offered by Milk Bar, some may be less familiar with the process behind building a dessert empire. This business competition will give them a glimpse into a product they had previously only consumed. It’s not often that students get a voice in their favorite brands, but Milk Bar is changing that.

The force behind this initiative is SuitUp, a 501c3 education non-profit dedicated to increasing career awareness for all students. Through their carefully planned business competitions, students are able to become CEOs for the day and interact with volunteers that have stories just like theirs. By the end of their experience, students slowly come to see the corporate world as part of their own. Even if it comes with sprinkles!

Better yet, corporate America is starting to see students as part of their world too. By investing in SuitUp programming, Milk Bar is investing in the future of its own diversity. As it stands, only 1% of Fortune 500 companies have a CEO that identifies as African American. SuitUp Executive Director, Lauren Reilly shares, “many industries are looking to hire employees from diverse backgrounds but complain that the ‘talent pipeline’ isn’t there. That’s just not true. We need to hold companies accountable and start investing in diverse talent as early as 10 years old.” She further explains that schools, especially in under-resourced areas, don’t have the capacity to introduce students to careers or job titles like CEO or Director of Culinary Operations. “When we don’t connect academic success with future career aspirations, we do our students of color and those from underserved communities a disservice. Let’s put them in the driver’s seat. Let’s elevate their voices and show them that they deserve a place at the table.”

This is where SuitUp comes in. Just over 80% of the students they serve are Black or Hispanic. It is this diverse group that will shape the companies of tomorrow. All these students need is access and the opportunity to feel empowered. Milk Bar is making this a possibility through SuitUp. Will your company be next?

Want to learn more about SuitUp? Get your company or students involved at

Lauren Reilly
SuitUp Incorporated
+1 415-328-1830
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