Back on October 23, 2013, I wrote a piece congratulating Dr. Hodges of Houston Community College (HCC) for being named as 2013 Entrepreneurial President of the year by National Association for Community College Entrepreneurship (NACCE). In that article I gave a brief history of HCC’s Center for Entrepreneurship and how it got started. I outlined Newspring, a faith-based 501(c)(3) organization and the critical role they played with the Newspring Business Plan Competition and how that competition planted the first seeds that grew into HCC’s Center for Entrepreneurship. If you would like to read that article for reference click HERE.
At the time I wrote that article I did not know that Sandra Louvier, the Center for Entrepreneurship Director, won NACCE’s Impact Award for her role in assisting in the creation and the launching of the Center. So today, let’s tip our hats to Sandra for her award and bringing more positive Press to HCC, the Center for Entrepreneurship and Newspring.
The article below was written by Sheryl Birch and appears in The Katy News.
Sheryl Birch | October 29, 2013
HCC ‘owned’ the show at national entrepreneurship conference
Houston Community College Northwest president, Dr. Zachary Hodges, has been named the 2013 Entrepreneurial President of the Year by the National Association for
Community College Entrepreneurship (NACCE).
In 2007, Dr. Hodges partnered with Newspring, a faith-based organization aimed at the economic development of the Spring Branch area of Houston, to launch the area’s first business plan competition with prize money awards.
Taking progressive steps by testing small projects and building successes that fueled support for the next phase of growth in entrepreneurship, Dr. Hodges made another first step in developing HCC’s Center for Entrepreneurship in 2009 by committing start-up funding to hire a director for the Center. Continuing success and commitment to both programs, the college also won and spearheaded the HCC Goldman Sachs 10,000 Small Businesses program in 2011, which offers Greater Houston small business owners access to a practical business and management education.
“I have always believed that small business growth is essential to Houston’s economic vitality. We’ve been committed to aiding that growth for six years by providing programs that result in stronger small business decision making for both startups and existing businesses. We are dedicated to empowering small business owners and their employees to grow and thrive. I’m honored to be recognized by NACCE for my efforts in fostering the dreams of entrepreneurs,” said Dr. Hodges.
The college’s Center for Entrepreneurship director, Sandra Louvier, won NACCE’s Impact Award. Hired in 2009, Sandra assisted in creating and launching HCC’s first Center for Entrepreneurship. She has also established, maintained, and developed ongoing strategic partnerships with entities such as SCORE, Constant Contact, local chambers of commerce, University of Houston Small Business Development Center, economic development agencies, and management districts. Ms. Louvier has also served in various positions in the Goldman Sachs 10,000 Small Businesses project devoted primarily to recruitment of small business owners through community, regional, and national partners.
HCC has been chosen, along with seven other community colleges in the U.S., to serve as an ambassador for NACCE. Ms. Louvier serves as the HCC representative ambassador due to her active participation and use of NACCE resources and contacts to grow HCC programs over the last five years. She is in contact with over 50 colleges in 30 states to assist their members in accessing NACCE resources to grow their programs. “We are humbled by these honors and also grateful for the opportunity to place HCC in a national spotlight,” said Louvier.
“This year our awards honor two leaders in entrepreneurship education and an outstanding college president who has built a culture of entrepreneurship on his campus that benefits the whole community,” said NACCE President and CEO Heather Van Sickle. “These dedicated individuals have championed entrepreneurship, bringing colleges and the communities they serve together to promote entrepreneurship while powerfully impacting how students and community partners think about entrepreneurship.
Founded in 2002, NACCE hosts an annual conference and exhibition, regional summits, a quarterly journal, monthly webinars, a dynamic list-serve and training resources. The organization recognizes community college presidents and representatives who have taken action by dedicating resources committed to fostering entrepreneurship and small business development on their campuses, thereby spurring innovation and job creation in their communities. NACCE honored Dr. Hodges and Ms. Louvier with their award October 15 at NACCE’s annual conference in Charlotte, NC.
HCC is one of the country’s largest singly-accredited, open-admission, community colleges offering associate degrees, certificates, workforce training and lifelong learning opportunities for 75,000 students each semester. HCC is composed of six colleges that serve the greater Houston area’s diverse communities by preparing individuals to live and work in today’s increasingly international and technological society. To learn more go to hccs.edu.
National Association for Community College Entrepreneurship (NACCE) is a non-profit organization for educators, entrepreneurs, and distinguished business development professionals to provide quality programs and services in entrepreneurship education and serve as advocates for “entrepreneurship movement.” NACCE was founded in 2002. The organization held its inaugural conference in 2003 and has held annual national conferences each year ever since. It became a membership association in early 2006.
As a membership association, NACCE helps community colleges nationwide link their traditional role of workforce development with entrepreneurial development. Through membership, an annual conference and exhibition, a quarterly journal, monthly webinars and podcasts, a dynamic list-serv, and other resources, NACCE serves as the hub for the dissemination and integration of knowledge and successful practices regarding entrepreneurship education and student business incubation. These programs and courses advance economic prosperity in the communities served by its member colleges.
Newspring are followers of Christ: professionals, business people, artists, teachers, and colleagues who believe that helping others to sustain themselves and their families financially is an important part of our Christian witness.
Newspring is totally focused on the Spring Branch area of Houston. Those of us who work with Newspring believe that many people in Spring Branch suffer the effects of economic instability. Families in Spring Branch are constantly on the move, seeking employment and better housing. It is difficult for many Spring Branch businesses to network into the broader Houston marketplace.
The primary goal of Newspring is to help stabilize Spring Branch, especially the Latino population there. How? By starting and nurturing businesses in the area. We are experienced business men and women who want to share what we know about business. And we also help Spring Branch businesses by expanding their market opportunities, offering our collective network of business contacts and potential customers far beyond the borders of Spring Branch.
Newspring was organized in 2006 and is a 501(c)(3) public charity.
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