GCC’s “Year of Entrepreneurship” Offers Multifaceted Opportunities for the GLOW Area

Nicole Manapol Announced as First Speaker of Series

Calling all entrepreneurs! People with passion, ideas and energy. People who want to change the world, and be their own boss. Risk takers and dreamers. Those who realize ‘no’ is one step closer to ‘Yes!,” and who embrace failure on route to success. This year, the Business Division of Genesee Community College is focusing on entrepreneurship and offering a series of lectures, partnerships and opportunities to inspire and support the enterprising talent and abilities of people in the Genesee, Livingston, Orleans and Wyoming (GLOW) region.

Entrepreneurship Speaker Series, competitions, symposiums, conferences and special collaborations are all coming together in the 2017-2018 academic year under the helm of Dr. Lina LaMattina, director of GCC’s business programs and assistant professor, as well as the College’s business faculty members and the College’s student-based CEO Club.

The first event in the Entrepreneurship Speaker Series features Nicole Manapol on Thursday, September 28, 2017, 1 – 2 PM in the central Forum of GCC’s Batavia Campus. As the director of Letchworth Gateway Villages (LGV) Initiative, Manapol is helping catalyze economic growth, including new tourism-related market opportunities, for the communities that serve as “gateways” to Letchworth State Park. Led by the villages of Perry, Mount Morris and Geneseo, the USDA-funded collaboration is working to help stimulate economic growth and regional cooperation through network building, technical assistance, research and awareness building. Among the most recent projects include conducting a visitor survey, increasing online visibility and tourism in the region, and launching a blog that will highlight innovations and the entrepreneurial efforts in neighboring rural communities. For further information go to: https://www.letchworthgatewayvillages.org/

Setting the stage for her position with LGV, Manapol was a social impact consultant with more than a dozen years, traveling the world and empowering communities, individuals and organizations to enact transformational change. From Central America to the Asian-Pacific, the Middle East to North Africa, she has helped create opportunities for people or organizations to realize their potential and strategically position, brand and enable their natural and regional assets to the maximum capability.

She is a native of Geneseo, a Peace Corps Fellow with a Master of Public Administration degree from Middlebury Institute of International Studies, and she earned a Bachelor of Science degree in International Affairs from Georgetown University School of Foreign Service.

“We are so excited to have Nicole coming to Genesee Community College to help us kickoff our “Year of Entrepreneurship,” Dr. LaMattina said. “Through her travels, experiences, academic degrees, career choices and her energy, she projects and even embodies the overall entrepreneurial spirit we are always trying to foster here at GCC.”

Duncan T. Moore, vice provost for Entrepreneurship at the Ain Center for Entrepreneurship within the University of  Rochester is among the supporters of GCC’s dynamic Year of Entrepreneurship and this kickoff event.  For nearly 15 years, this group has focused on a broad definition of entrepreneurship that fosters the generation and transformation of ideas into enterprises that create economic or social value reaching far beyond a discrete set of business skills or practices for visionary, yet pragmatic achievements. For further information about the Ain Center go to: http://www.rochester.edu/entrepreneurship/

“It is truly an honor to have the support of the Ain Center in helping us to further grow our entrepreneurship programs and spirit here at Genesee,” Dr. LaMattina said. “Through their interest and support, we will be able to broaden our entrepreneurial scope as the AIN Center has done so well.”

Dr. LaMattina is also excited about GCC’s collaborative partnership with a number of local organizations, including Genesee County Economic Development Center, New York State Small Business Development Center, Batavia Development Corporation, Mancuso Business Development Group, Genesee County Chamber of Commerce and the Batavia Business Improvement District. Together, these groups are planning a special “Pitch Competition” that will be designed to help nurture business ideas, plans, concepts and the entrepreneurial spirit in the region. Currently, the parameters of competition are being discussed which might include monetary prizes, business mentoring, legal advice and of course, the essential opportunity of networking with regional professionals from many industries. Details about the Pitch Competition should be available on September 28 at Manapol’s presentation.

The next big date in GCC’s “Year of Entrepreneurship” is Thursday, October 26, 2017 for the first annual Agri-Tourism Symposium. Hosted by GCC’s Tourism and Hospitality Management Program, and supported in part by Farm Credit East, this event will inspire entrepreneurial agri-tourism through another featured keynote speaker, a wider panel discussion with questions and answers from the audience, and then meet and greet session with many local vendors sharing their harvest of products and services. Amy Slusser, professor of GCC’s Tourism and Hospitality Management and her students are finalizing the program and will have complete details very soon.      

For more information, contact Marketing Communications Associate Director Donna Rae Sutherland at (585) 343-0055 ext. 6616, or via email: dsutherland@genesee.edu.

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