MONTEREY PARK, CA – On Wednesday, January 27, from 5:00 to 6:30 pm, the East Los Angeles College (ELAC) Foundation and OmniWorks hosted a virtual Graduation and Showcase of the 2020 ELAC Incubator graduates and the critical work of the incubator in supporting aspiring and existing entrepreneurs in our communities.
Speakers and attendees included Los Angeles Community College District (LACCD) Board of Trustees President Steve Veres and Trustee Mike Foing, ELAC Foundation Board President Ms. Castro-Salvati, ELAC President Alberto J. Roman, Union Bank’s Director, Foundation and Community Outreach Officer, Sylvia Castillo, local businesses and investors, students, staff and more, followed by 2020 Graduate Presentations and updates on the success of the inaugural cohort alum.
“I was excited to attend the ELAC Incubator graduation and showcase event showcasing some of the entrepreneurs who are closer to realizing their dreams of becoming small business owners. The board and I believe in the goals of the ELAC Incubator and have watched the program grow since it launched in 2018” said LACCD Board President Steve Veres.
“Union Bank is a proud ELAC Incubator founding partner since 2018 — as we’ve seen the positive impact such programs can offer in strengthening the East Los Angeles community. It’s nurturing individuals to launch their dream of starting a business, providing the tools and expertise for expansion in creating wealth for themselves and their families. We congratulate all the ELAC Incubator participants. Your commitment is, especially, commendable, given the global pandemic – a crisis surfacing inequities facing communities of color. We also salute the ELAC Foundation Board, faculty and OmniWorks for your strategic vision in creating these unique entrepreneurial opportunities for local students and small businesses in our community,” shares Sylvia Castillo, MUFG Union Bank, External Affairs Manager – Los Angeles.
Between June and December of 2020, 89 entrepreneurs participated in the program that offered 15 unique workshops on topics from Entrepreneur Mindset to Financial Modeling, Crowdsource Funding, and Taxes and Accounting. 60% of the participants were women, and 95% were People of Color – which is reflective of our goal to serve women, minorities, veterans, LGBTQ, and justice-involved aspiring and existing entrepreneurs. In all, nearly 1200 hours of entrepreneur training were provided with an additional 150 hours in mentorship for the final cohort.
“I am proud of what the incubator has accomplished and know that with our broad community support, it will continue to grow and increase our capacity to serve more ELAC student entrepreneurs and small business owners in the communities we serve” said ELAC Foundation Board President Marissa Castro-Salvati.
“With millions of jobs lost due to COVID, the creation of community-based businesses is critical to keeping our communities strong. Now more than ever, the ELAC Incubator is needed giving underrepresented communities the opportunity to achieve economic mobility. At ELAC we are focused on pathway programs that prepare our students for transfer to 4-year institutions and career readiness. We believe in transforming lives through good-paying jobs and careers,” said Dr. Alberto J. Roman, President of ELAC
The ELAC Incubator – Powered by OmniWorks™ prepares ELAC students with critical business education and support to launch and grow their businesses and prepare them for success.
ELAC Incubator transitioned its place-based programs to an online format in June of 2020 – in order to provide critical support to small businesses during the ongoing COVID pandemic – providing workshops on Business Model Canvas, Customer Discovery, Entrepreneur Mindset, Financial Modeling, Community Capital (Crowd Funding), Accounting/Tax Best Practices, Legal Framework for COVID 19, Effective Sales Techniques, Digital Marketing, Presentation Skills, and included small group and one-on-one mentorships.