Young, scrappy, and hungry…or what does Hamilton have to do with the Global Entrepreneurship Summit

I’m just like my country, I’m young, scrappy and hungry, and I’m not throwing away my shot.

These lines are taken from the musical, HamiltonThere is so much I could say about this musical, but I’ll leave it at when is the last time that a Broadway musical influenced treasury policy? Hamilton is truly a phenomenon.

And I am truly obsessed. I heard the soundtrack for the first time almost a year ago and have listened to it every week since, oftentimes multiple times a week, oftentimes multiple times a day…in a row. I may be listening to it right now. It is my go to soundtrack. Now Lin-Manuel Miranda is a genius, but it is not just his brilliant rhyming, catchy tunes, and emotional prowess that brings me back every time. It’s the fact that he wrote songs that capture the essence of what we are doing in my favorite art form.

I’m just like my country, I’m young, scrappy and hungry, and I’m not throwing away my shot.

This is repeated throughout the musical by the title character, but is it a stretch to say that those words could have come out of the mouths of any one of our social entrepreneurs? Hamilton is about the making of a nation. Dare to Innovate is about the making of a new economy. Both put youth at the center. Both are fraught with rivalry, challenge, and bias but also hope, opportunity, and a chance for individuals to rise up. Both are revolutionary.

Look around, look around, how lucky are we to be alive right now. We have reached a tipping point. Entrepreneurship is on the lips of both decision makers and changemakers. Resources have begun to flow into developing nations to empower and enable their youth populations. We have been invited into the room where it happens. This is our moment.

One of my favorite moments in the musical is when Hamilton, Lafayette, Mulligan, and Laurens meet by happenstance in a bar. Hamilton exclaims, “What are the odds the gods would put us all in one spot poppin’ a squat on conventional wisdom, like it or not;” The four go on to play crucial roles not just in the Revolution, but also in the making of America. These anti-slavery youth of diverse backgrounds put orthodoxies aside and built an innovative, world-moving economic, philosophical, and political system. That moment of the play brings fate and possibility roaring together and puts you on the edge of your seat wanting. Next week I’ll be attending the Global Entrepreneurship Summit and these are the types of meetings I am expecting (no pressure to the organizers). The Summit will bring together young entrepreneurial leaders from around the world. My hope is action. My goal is non-conventional collaboration. History is happening and we will not throw away our shot.

Meghan McCormick is Founder, Chairwoman and Interim Executive Director of the Dare to Innovate Board of Directors. She currently helps businesses create value through disruptive change by working across disciplines. She believes that we will be faced with many challenges, but if we harness the amazing power of youth, think creatively and apply innovation with vigor, we can surmount any barriers and create a world where everyone has access to opportunity. Meghan is a Returned Peace Corps volunteer from Guinea, where in partnership with the Guinean Association for the Development of Private Enterprise, she focused on social impact innovation and social entrepreneurship in the town of Kindia. She is blessed to have the support of a nice strong, black cup of coffee and her American and Guinean families in all that she attempts.