Fast food jobs can get a bad rap as a temporary gig, not the start of a possible career path. Taco Bell and its parent company, Yum! Brands, are trying to change that perception with a new program for employees.
In January, the company announced the Yum! Center for Global Franchise Excellence, a partnership with the University of Louisville’s College of Business.
“Our hope is the Center will carve a path to economic opportunity and successful ownership for talented, underrepresented people while bringing diverse voices and ideas to the broader franchising community,” said Yum! chief legal and franchise officer Scott Catlett in a company press release.
Taco Bell Business School, one of the first initiatives, will start as a 6-week boot camp for “restaurant leaders,” according to a University of Louisville press release.
With tuition covered by scholarships, students will learn the basics of owning a franchise. The accredited classes cover the groundwork of running a business, from securing financing to human resources training. Current Taco Bell franchisees will stop by to offer their perspectives as well.
And in case you were looking for a celebrity angle, hip-hop star Lil Nas X is slated to help spread the word to Taco Bell employees, the university said.
Pre-fame, Nas worked at a Taco Bell in Georgia! Last year he was appointed Taco Bell’s Chief Impact Officer.
“Franchise ownership among underrepresented people of color and women is lower than their representation in the population,” said Kathleen Gosser, director of the Yum! Center. “Our goal is to uncover and reduce barriers to franchise ownership, starting with education.”
The first class of Taco Bell Business School begins their boot camp in February, according to the university, with three more sessions scheduled for 2022. Plans are in the works to continue expanding the program as time goes on.
Now they just need to decide on a school mascot. The Chalupas? The Crunchy Gorditas? With a menu as big as Taco Bell’s, there are plenty of choices!
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