Entrepreneurs, by definition, pave new paths. They refuse to accept the ideals of society that tell them they must get a degree, find an employer, and work their way up the ladder, in that order. While entrepreneurs can make a difference in their own lives and the lives of their families, future generations are now seeing what kind of a difference they can make in local areas and across the globe. Minority entrepreneurs, especially, are showing the rest of the world that anyone and everyone can turn dreams into a reality when it comes to starting and running a business.

In the past, both recent and ancient, minorities have been viewed as “less than.” And through the course of history, we’ve seen minorities break through these limitations and prove that every person is capable of achieving something great, no matter their race, gender, or age. The minority entrepreneurs of today are no different.

As more people branch out from the norm of entering the work force as an employee, entrepreneurs seek to create their own path and satisfy their financial needs by going their own way and starting a business. While this idea is not new, it is becoming more attainable for many individuals, including minorities, due in large part to the growing popularity of alternative business funding options. A lot of entrepreneurship has to do with the mindset—knowing that you have something to offer the world, believing that you can succeed, and staying motivated enough to put in the work to achieve business ownership are absolutely vital for any entrepreneur. As more and more people stop putting minorities under glass ceilings and inside boxes of limitations and doubts, minority entrepreneurs are gaining the mental strength they need to succeed as business owners. Additionally, minorities have access to education, funding, and mentorship that was not previously available to them.

While minorities still make up a small portion of the total number of business owners in the US, their numbers are increasing. They are making a substantial difference in society, and they are giving hope to others who previously had little or none. The next generation is watching these minority entrepreneurs overcome the odds, beat diversity, and overthrow the naysayers. Our leaders of tomorrow are seeing their success and significant influence on their communities. Kids are learning that following social norms is not always the path for everyone, and breaking out of the status quo and taking a chance can be well worth it. Minority business owners have proven time and time again that nothing will stand in the way of achieving a dream and making a difference, and thankfully, they are passing that lesson on to the next generation.