After analyzing his own obstacles entering the workforce, Jonathan created GardHouse to provide resources for students just like himself. Jonathan was a minority student raised by a single mother that worked to make “ends meet,” so professional connections were slim. Though he held a series of internships throughout college, none translated into technical experience when searching for employment. As he did more research into work-based programs, employment disparities were still prevalent in Charlotte.
Originally from Philadelphia, Jonathan was exposed to a variety of programs for students of color to get into college. Similarly to Charlotte, there were very few that assisted first-generation students with building professional experience. This left students entering college for the first time without tools to properly navigate.Knowing that students of color in Charlotte are less than 30% likely to graduate college, with some reasons falling around employment opportunities, signaled a time for a change.