Article by Jason Setnyk | Photo by Mai-Liis Renaud
Cornwall, Ontario – The Summer Company program has kicked off the summer season by supporting seven young entrepreneurs from Cornwall and SDG in turning their business ideas into reality. This program, funded by the Government of Ontario and administered by the Cornwall Business Enterprise Centre, aims to encourage students to start and run their own businesses while providing them with financial assistance and valuable coaching and mentoring.
The seven enthusiastic entrepreneurs participating in the Summer Company program this year are Tiffany Hill with Tenacity Hockey, Oluwademilade Sobanjo with Mind Mosaic, Kurt Dillon with Strikeout Squad, Adam Reid Baker with Seaway Martial Arts Camp, Rebecca Reed with Glengarry Agribots, Ahmad El Mehdi Agouzoul with Pop N’ Fluff, and Tavish Mason with BijouBox.
Selected for their innovative business plans, which included marketing strategies and financial projections, these young adults have received $3,000 in start-up funding assistance to bring their ventures to life. They will also benefit from hands-on coaching and mentoring from local business leaders, ensuring they have the necessary guidance to succeed.
Shauna Baggs, a Business Consultant with the Cornwall Business Enterprise Centre, highlighted the importance of the Summer Company program in developing entrepreneurial skills among young adults. “This program provides a great opportunity for our participants to develop entrepreneurial skills while making money at the same time,” she said. “Through Summer Company, we are helping to develop future community business leaders.”
The range of services offered by this year’s Summer Company participants is diverse and reflects their unique talents and interests. Some of the businesses include summer camps, a popcorn and cotton candy vendor, a jewelry enterprise, a robotic lawnmower service, and a mind mapping app.
The Summer Company program acts as a stepping stone for students, paving the way for them to continue their businesses throughout high school and post-secondary education. Many past participants of the program have gone on to run successful full-time businesses in the community. Examples include Essential Esthetics, Crystal’s Beautique Spa and Beauty Lounge, and Ol’Sugar Barn Ice Cream Stand.
The Cornwall Business Enterprise Centre, which operates under the Cornwall Economic Development umbrella, is dedicated to supporting small business owners and entrepreneurs in the region. By offering information, tools, and support during the start-up and growth stages of business operation, they contribute to the economic prosperity of Cornwall, Stormont, Dundas, Glengarry, and Akwesasne. In addition to overseeing the Summer Company program, they also administer the Starter Company PLUS program.
As the seven young entrepreneurs embark on their business journeys this summer, their participation in the Summer Company program marks a promising start to their entrepreneurial careers. With the guidance and support provided by the program, they are well-equipped to make a positive impact on the local business landscape while honing their skills and gaining valuable experience.