Join this year’s Young Entrepreneurs Academy (YEA) Class for their CEO Roundtable Event, where local business owners share their stories, wisdom and secrets to their success.


The Young Entrepreneurs Academy (YEA!) is in its eleventh year at Mohawk Valley Community College and has seen close to 140 students learn how to become business owners!


YEA is a groundbreaking and exciting program that transforms local middle and high school students into real, confident entrepreneurs. Through the year-long program, area students in grades 6-12 generate business ideas, conduct market research, write business plans, pitch to a panel of investors, and launch their very own companies. Throughout the class, students go on field trips, have speakers on various business topics come to class, work with one-on-one mentors and graphic designers who design their brand identity and bring their business to life!


Founded in Rochester, YEA is now in 168 communities across America.


CEO Roundtable


5:30-7:00pm at thINCubator, 326 Broad Street, Utica

The event is free and open to the public! Attendees can get inspiration from our panelists AND meet this year’s class of young entrepreneurs.

No reservations needed.

The panelists (pictured above, left to right)


Frank DuRoss, Special Advisor to the President of MVCC, Co-owner, Utica Comets and Utica City FC

Steven Bulger, CEO/Executive Director, ICAN

Julius Blackshear, CEO/Owner, Visionary Vending LLC

Michelle Klosek, Owner, The Stief, The Varick and Sickenberger Lane

Sam Phou, Proprietor, The Lotus Garden


Thank you to our YEA Program Partners:

M&T Bank/Partners Trust Bank Charitable Fund

Berkshire Bank

First Source Federal Credit Union










Special thanks to:

Greater Utica Chamber of Commerce





For more information about YEA, please contact Program Manager Michelle Truett at

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