Defy (v.):
to challenge to do something
considered impossible.

Enroll in Defy

Dream bigger than ever. Take
calculated risks with high returns.
Control your destiny. Defy the odds!


Who will you be for the rest of your life? Want to be your own boss? Defy can give you the know-how, connections, support, and investment that you need to live out your entrepreneurial dreams.

You’ve had your share of ups and downs and, in the process, have learned what you want from life. You’re aware of your leadership qualities and the influence; you’re a natural-born entrepreneur, and know you want to be successful—legally this time—but aren’t quite sure how to get there. If this describes you, Defy wants to partner with you!

If you have a felony, and are ready for the challenge of a lifetime, Defy Ventures provides the perfect opportunity.

Defy seeks individuals who are:

  • Formerly incarcerated with felony histories (“tougher” criminal backgrounds don’t scare us; we prefer a history of leadership in gangs and drug rings)
  • Ambitious and hungry for legal success
  • Committed to their personal transformation and a crime-free life
  • Exceptionally hardworking
  • Entrepreneurial and willing to “get it done” no matter the obstacles
  • 100% drug free


How to Apply

Defy is a competitive and rigorous program. Entrepreneurship is not for the faint-of-heart, and our training reflects the intensity you’ll need to succeed as a business owner.

Check out what our EITs reported after participating in just our three-week Introductory Training:


“My participation in Defy has had a positive effect on my relationship with my family/loved ones.”


“I would likely recommend Defy to a friend with a criminal history.”


“Introductory Training Tuition was worth what I paid.”

If you have a criminal history and are willing to invest in your future, please complete the following steps:

1. Submit an Inquiry

If you live within two hours of NYC or the California Bay Area:

Email Please include a phone number where we can reach you and any other information that you think might help us evaluate your interest in Defy.

If you are based elsewhere in the U.S.:

You may be eligible for participation in our National Learning program. Email, stating your interest and location, and a member of our Admissions Office will reach out to you.

2. Apply

Complete and submit your application here:

3. Interview

Our Admissions Office will schedule a time for your interview in either NYC or the California Bay Area or by phone/Skype. National Learning candidates are interviewed via Skype. Arrive on time with your completed application.

4. Complete Introductory Training

Successfully complete Introductory Training, which consists of:

  • Online courses in entrepreneurship, raising start up capital (even when you have a felony), and career planning
  • Online mentoring
  • Participating in events with Defy’s executive volunteers

Upon successful completion of your Introductory Training, you will be admitted to join the Defy Academy.


Want more details about the program? Read our Frequently Asked Questions.