By Imani Wj Wright
Special to AFRO
Recently, Morgan State University hosted Goldman Sachs’ 10,000 Small Business Program Graduation. Goldman Sachs was proud to announce that the 2019 graduating class included 110 entrepreneurs in the Baltimore area.
Jocelyn Gainers, Elijah Cummings Impact Award Winner. (Photos by Imani Wright)
“Fulfilling its commitment to small business enterprise investment and development throughout the Greater Baltimore region, the 10KSB program will graduate those who have successfully completed the three month intensive program, rooted in empowering small businesses and creating greater access to education, capital and business support services. To-date, more than 242 small business operators have graduated from the program in Baltimore,” said Goldman Sachs.
Prior to the ceremony, several graduating entrepreneurs participated in a roundtable discussion. A variety of topics were covered regarding the “key learnings, opportunities, and challenges” that they discovered while completing the program. President & CEO Tisha Clark of J.D. Clark Professional Services, said “We are a general contractor, property manager, and a proud graduate of the Goldman Sach Small Business Program. Since graduating from the program, we have hired a new staff person, we’re in the process of purchasing a building that we have just recently been renting, and we have secured space in Baltimore City and Baltimore City Certified. It’s an awesome program to propel you in order to grow your small business.”
Chops open up the event as the graduates file in. (Photos by Imani Wright)
The popular Baltimore-based drumming duo, A1 Chops opened the program with a vibrant and enthusiastic performance as the graduates filed into the ballroom. Their performance ended with a collective roar from the crowd, and truly set the tone for this high spirited ceremony. Shortly after all the graduates were seated on stage, U.S. Representative Anthony Brown, officially presented the inaugural Elijah E. Cummings Impact award to Jocelyn Gainers of the Family Recovery Program. According to Goldman Sachs, The Elijah E. Cummings award was presented to “a small business owner whose acumen and business personify the life and legacy of Congressman Elijah Cummings in an impactful manner that elevates the community it serves.”
Asahi Pompey, Dr. David Wilson, David Solomon, CEO of Goldman Sachs. (Photos by Imani Wright)
Baltimore Mayor, Jack young, Morgan State University’s President Dr.David Wilson, and Goldman Sachs CEO David Solomon were just a few of several noteworthy speakers in attendance. Baltimore’s resilience, and entrepreneurial spirit were all constant points in many of the speakers’ speeches.
Morgan State’s Student Center Assistant Director of Operations, Larry Frazier, said “This event brings so much exposure to the University. And, it helps the young entrepreneur to mingle, and make contact that is priceless.”