For Immediate Release - June 18, 2014

Patrick Administration Awards Grant To Boost Entrepreneurship On Cape Cod

Funds Will Help Provide Entrepreneur Mentoring, Professional Development Services, Build Career Boosting Networks across the Cape Cod Region

HYANNIS – Wednesday, June 18, 2014 – At the Cape Cod Young Professionals’ 3rd Annual Community Breakfast in Hyannis, Secretary of Housing and Economic Development Gregory Bialecki today announced a $50,000 award from the Massachusetts Technology Collaborative (MassTech) to the Cape Cod Young Professionals (CCYP).  The award will be used to boost CCYP’s Career Connect Mentor Exchange project, which provides support to entrepreneurs and career development assistance to residents across Cape Cod. 

The funds will be used by CCYP to expand programming to address a broad set of career and professional development challenges by providing mentoring services to those starting a business, to workers just starting a career or making a job switch, for residents who are new to the Cape who are looking for insight into the business environment and for those looking to expand their business network. 

“Governor Patrick’s commitment to a collaborative economic growth strategy extends to all corners of the Commonwealth,” said Secretary of Housing and Economic Development Greg Bialecki. “We are delighted to support  the region’s workforce and support start-up business growth among the Cape’s young professionals.”

The grant was provided and will be overseen by the Innovation Institute at Mass Tech, a public economic development agency aimed at supporting the Commonwealth’s innovation economy and boosting start-up entrepreneurship statewide.

“Massachusetts is leading the way in entrepreneur mentoring programs, which include internationally-known programs such as MassChallenge and TechStars,” stated Pamela Goldberg, CEO of Mass Tech. “Whether in Cambridge or on the Cape, mentorship programs look to provide the resources entrepreneurs need to grow and succeed. Here on Cape Cod, we hope this investment will kickstart a cycle of business mentoring, helping job seekers and start-up entrepreneurs expand their networks and their skillsets.”

In April, Governor Deval Patrick announced an economic development package that provides new tools and training so the Commonwealth’s workforce is prepared to meet the needs of employers, invests in its Gateway Cities to promote development across the entire state and provides incentives to create jobs and stimulate the economy. The Governor’s bill, An Act to Promote Growth and Opportunity, builds on the Administration’s proven growth strategy of investing in education, innovation and infrastructure that has led to record job creation in Massachusetts and made the Commonwealth a global leader in key innovation economy sectors.

The bill supports the future workforce of the innovation economy by investing in internships and mentoring programs to ensure that the pool of potential employees in the Commonwealth is trained and experienced in our high tech industries. The Innovation Institute leads Mass Tech’s entrepreneurship initiatives. The internship program provides grants to qualifying high tech companies to hire interns, providing students with experience and networking opportunities. The mentoring program provides entrepreneurs across the Commonwealth with access to advice and support. For more information on the bill, please visit www.mass.gov/compete.

"Mentoring relationships not only creates great business opportunities, they strengthen the fabric of our communities," said Cape and Islands Senator Dan Wolf.  "This is economic stimulus at a personal  level, and the young professionals is the perfect organization to make this happen."

“We are extremely grateful to the Commonwealth for this generous award, which will allow us to expand this important and timely initiative to address these critical issues,” stated Anne Van Vleck, Executive Director of the Cape Cod Young Professionals. “This award will propel our efforts to retain local young talent here and will make possible professional development resources and invaluable mentoring experiences here on the Cape.”

The Career Connect Mentor Exchange program was developed by CCYP in partnership with Listening 2 Leaders and the Cape Cod Chamber of Commerce. The program will build upon the network of entrepreneurs and workers that are already engaged in CCYP’s current programs such as the ‘Career Connect’ scholarship program. At today’s Annual Community Breakfast, CCYP awarded $16,000 in scholarships to six Cape Cod young professionals to support their education and professional development.

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The Massachusetts Technology Collaborative is an innovative public agency working to enhance economic growth, accelerate technology use and adoption, and harness the value of research by engaging in meaningful collaborations across academia, industry, and government.  From improving our health care systems and expanding high-speed internet across the state to fostering emerging industry clusters, MassTech is driving innovation and supporting a vibrant economy across the Commonwealth. The Innovation Institute at MassTech was created in 2003 to improve conditions for growth in the innovation economy by enhancing industry competitiveness, promoting conditions which enable growth; and providing data and analysis to stakeholders in the Massachusetts innovation economy that promotes understanding and informs policy development. masstech.org

Cape Cod Young Professionals (CCYP) was founded in November 2005 with the idea that Cape Cod could benefit from an organization of young people dedicated to the betterment of the region. Today CCYP is the only organization of its kind serving the region. capecodyoungprofessionals.org