Monday, September 26, 2022

Cape Fear Area Minority Business Development Week returns for its eighth year, offering 30 programs to support minority entrepreneurs. The conference is scheduled for October 3-7 and will offer free in-person and virtual seminars and workshops.

The week-long event features various workshops including successful business planning, start-up tips, financial health and wellness, and marketing. There are also sessions for Latinx business leaders and entrepreneurs, with some presentations in Spanish.

Several UNCW faculty and staff will share their insights into design and construction at UNCW and social entrepreneurship.

“Our Social Entrepreneurship Panel: Growing Your Business and Your Society is about building and operating businesses in impactful ways,” said Heather McWhorter, director of the UNCW Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship. “People are attracted to entrepreneurship for different reasons. Not everyone wants to make money out of it. This panel will discuss social entrepreneurship – doing good by doing well. Hopefully, this will give participants the spark needed to start their business or improve their business for social good. We will provide tools for participants to get started.

The session on social entrepreneurship will feature McWhorter; Dr. Karl Ricanek, professor of computer science, director of the I3S Institute & Face Aging Group and co-founder of Lapetus Solutions, Inc.; and Dr. Chris Prentice, associate professor of public administration. Dr. Jess Boersma, Associate Dean of the College of Arts and Sciences and Associate Director of I3S, will act as moderator.

The “Design and Build at UNC Wilmington” session will educate individuals about the types of projects on campus and how the university contracts with companies. UNCW Facilities Staff Harry Eason, Historically Underutilized Enterprises Program Support Coordinator; Tom McCarley, director of project management; and Rachel Patrick, Director of Architecture and Construction Services, will moderate the session.

The Wilmington Chamber of Commerce presents the Cape Fear MED Week conference. In 2015, UNCW hosted the first Cape Fear Region MED Week to recognize the impact of minority businesses and help level the playing field by providing guidance, networking and business development opportunities. The university remains committed to using programs and resources to improve relationships and expand collaborative efforts to grow minority businesses in the southeastern North Carolina region.

Cape Fear Region MED Week is part of the national celebration of Minority Business Development Week, established by Presidential Proclamation in 1983. Registration is open and early registration is encouraged. Visit the Wilmington Chamber of Commerce website for the full program and registration details. The event is open to the public.

–Venita Jenkins