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May 19, 2021

Program aims to help aspiring entrepreneurs


The New Haven Department of Cultural Affairs and startup accelerator Collab recently launched “Entrepreneurship Decoded,” a new program that is working to train budding entrepreneurs.

The six-week program, which runs through June 14, will teach participants what it means to be an entrepreneur and help them develop the skills they need to succeed.

The workshop includes six sessions, with each one focusing on a different aspect of entrepreneurship. Through virtual weekly meetings, participants are learning skills to help them build their brand and increase their public visibility.

Corrina Santos, a content creator for Wiley Publishing, kicked off the program May 12 with a talk on mental health issues that may spring up during the early stages of starting a business. 

Other sessions touch on topics such as finances, marketing, social media, creating ideas, and ways entrepreneurs can give back to their communities.

Tiffany Williams, an organizer of the event, is an entrepreneur herself. Williams explained that she wanted to incorporate as many aspects of entrepreneurship into the program as possible. She said her main inspiration came from her own journey and the steps she took to become an entrepreneur.

For example, her inspiration behind the first session came from her own experience when she was starting her own company.

“Honestly, I felt like my happiness was everything,” Williams said, “so that prompted me to focus a little bit more on the mental health portion of the program.” 

Williams also incorporated parts of her personal style into the program when creating the title and the branding for the workshop.

“Jay Z has a book called ‘Decoded,’” she said, “I’m a big fan of Jay Z, I feel like a lot of the things he’s done business-wise have been just spectacular moves.”

Williams was also inspired by a similar program launched by Collab.  

“They were already doing this in New Haven, and it was something that I hadn’t seen before,” Williams said. “I just knew I wanted to do something like this, but I wanted to add a twist to it.”

In addition to the six sessions, the program will also include a virtual pop-up shop, where selected entrepreneurs will be able to showcase their brands to the public. Ten participants will be chosen for the pop-up shop and will also receive $1,000 in seed money.  Dates for the pop-up shop have yet to be determined.

For more information, visit Collab’s website HERE.

Maureen Lynch is a summer intern for New Haven BIZ.

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