UTICA, N.Y. (WUTR/WFXV/WPNY)- The Mohawk Valley Community College Young Entrepreneur’s Academy (YEA) had their graduation last night at the thINCubator. The year-long experience teaches students to become business owners.
“Students came up with really great ideas this year. We have everything from like crocheted crafts and custom sneakers up to a doggy mentor program and we always have food which is really exciting. Some of them are going to take off and run their businesses, some have been making money already. Some might go to college and come back to their business in a little while. It is really all up to them. This class gives them all the tools they need to kick off their business if they need to.” -Michelle Truett, Program Manager for MVCC YEA
“It was really challenging but with such great mentors and teachers, they gave us opportunities that we never thought we could have and graduating just feels nice to know we got through all of it.” -Tha Kyet, YEA Student
“Here at MVCC we’re all about helping the Mohawk Valley with the entrepreneur eco system. It starts at a young age, kids from sixth to twelfth grade. We work with these young entrepreneurs for 25 weeks here, every Wednesday night. When they start a business, we actually have them file a DBA at the county building. At the end we have a pitch, they pitch their business to businesses and we give them money to start their business.” –Frank Duross, V.P for Community College Development, MVCC
“I’m so proud of them. You know these twelve kids really every week for three hours a week, they were logging on doing their work. I keep telling them they’re going to be the only students in history to say in the region that they started a business during a pandemic.” -Michelle Truett
Over the last five years, 50 businesses have gotten started from the ‘thINCubator’.