Wednesday, January 25, 2012

SEED Program announces first round of recipients!

The University at Albany's Small Enterprise Economic Development program announced first round of program graduates and loans.

Rolled out one year ago in June, the program has seeded 16 businesses and 52 new jobs. The program has provided 52 new jobs.

The program helps "grow small businesses with the confidence and support they need," says University President George Phillip. The program illustrates the vital role that universities "can play and should play," says Phillip.

Michael Castellana, CEO and President of SEFCU, and also a UAlbany alumi, says the program demonstrates that "character matters." It's small engines like these that are going to propel the local economy, says Castellana.

Small Business Development Center Regional Director Bill Brigham agrees. He worked with each of the participants, helping train them and make their dreams a reality. The program combines training with funding, providing "job creation, self-employment and self-esteem" for "denied entrepreneurs," says Brigham.

Among the recipients were Patricia Greenwood, who runs an antique business in Schenectady, Bruce Evans, who owns a pest control business in Rensselaer, and John Robinson, whose Our Ability program will connect disable persons with educational and employment opportunities.

Central Avenue business-owner Kerry Ann Wilson was also recognized at the ceremony. She will open her new location of Heaven on Earth on Feb. 6, at 1pm. Check out her interviews tonight on Fox 23, YNN, and WNYT13!