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Building the Next Generation of Entrepreneurs in the Centralina Region

Entrepreneurship in Focus at Centralina WDB NEXGEN Council Meeting 

NEXGEN main 2017

The Centralina NEXGEN Council held an impactful meeting on Thursday, April 4, 2017 at Rowan-Cabarrus CC South Campus in Concord.  The meeting had over 50 individuals in attendance.  Some of those in attendance consisted of NEXGEN council members, NEXGEN contracting staff and young adults from the Resource Development Center (RDC--Stanly), Iredell Community Action Research and Evaluation, Inc. (I-CARE--Iredell & Lincoln counties), Union County Community Action (UCCA--Anson & Union counties), and the Salisbury-Rowan Community Action Agency (SRCAA--Rowan & Cabarrus counties).  

Solomon McAuley, Centralina WDB NEXGEN Specialist introduced the topic for the meeting as well as an entrepreneurship homework assignment for each agency in attendance.  Each of the NEXGEN contractors and their young adults were tasked with coming up with their own companies while writing and completing a business plan and model.  This assignment discussion shifted the meeting right into the entrepreneurship presentations.   

Karen NEXGEN 1

Karen B. Hicks, owner of Rollin Delivery & Errands, LLC started the presentation talking about how she started her own company.  The company was created in February 2013.  The company provides meal delivery and other resources to older adults in the local community.  She has a contract with a company out of Maryland to deliver medications as well.  One of the key takeaways and advice Hicks provided to the young adults interested in starting their own businesses was to "Start where you are, and use what you have" she said. Over the last few years her company has expanded and now she is looking to hire NEXGEN young adults.  She offered opportunities for NEXGEN customers to do customers service positions, drivers, and sales representatives jobs.  Hicks stated that she hopes to hire up to 15 individuals.  

The next presentation featured Shaun Andrews, CEO and Founder of InspireIn You.  Andrews started his company which tackles the topic of mental health.  Andrews travels from city to city building the framework of InspireInYou; what he says is a global solution for everyday people to improve their mental health.  He was college football player and for many years he saw his teammates struggle mentally due to the physical interactions on the field.  Seeing his friends struggle mentally, prompted him to start this organization. Andrews goes out speaking and holding events about his mental health company using technology.  He has a motivational app in the works similar to Pandora.  He decided to start the app after losing a very close friend.  With the launch of his new app, he was able to provide the audience with great information on how to start something to this magnitude and building a team from the ground up. 
Shaun NEXGEN 2

Overall, the two presentations provided the young adults with tools to become entrepreneurs and the means to get started.  The meeting also provided individuals with immediate opportunities to get jobs with the owners who presented.  

For more information about the Centralina NEXGEN meeting contact, Solomon McAuley, Centralina WDB's NEXGEN Specialist at smcauley@centralina.org or www.centralinaworks.com.   

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