Inland Empire Strengthens Connection to the Region’s Entrepreneurs

Thanks to the leadership and coordination of Regional Director Lisa Kiplinger-Kennedy, 12 colleges in the Inland Empire/Desert region recently signed the Presidents for Entrepreneurship Pledge from the National Association for Community College Entrepreneurship (NACCE).

The pledge empowers colleges to connect with entrepreneurs in their communities, collaborate with industry, form teams to focus on entrepreneurship, and focus on job creation.

“The pledge that these 12 presidents are making shows their commitment to entrepreneurship and I’m honored to partner with these colleges and presidents to advance entrepreneurship in our region,” Kiplinger-Kennedy said.

The colleges were recognized at a virtual signing ceremony on February 8 that included remarks from Chancellor Eloy Ortiz Oakley, Vice Chancellor Sheneui Weber, NACCE President and CEO Rebecca Corbin, and a keynote presentation by Entrepreneurial Learning Initiative Founder Gary Schoeniger.

“The spirit of innovation and collaboration among leaders looking to address current challenges and forging a path to a more inclusive hopeful future was inspiring,” Corbin said.

Several college presidents who signed the pledged acknowledged the important role entrepreneurial thinking will continue to play in today’s economy. “We know the entrepreneurship mindset provides the framework for an evolving and robust economy and also for healthy, interconnected communities,” said Dr. Robin Steinback, president of Moreno Valley College. “We also know that entrepreneurs are disruptors and change agents from which we all benefit.”

“I believe that entrepreneurial thinking and action is the most promising way forward to create more equitable opportunities for those students and communities whose marginalization has become even more pronounced in recent months,” said Dr. Eva Bagg, President of Barstow Community College.

For more information about the Presidents for Entrepreneurship Pledge, visit www.nacce.com/pfep.

Building on the momentum of the Presidents for Entrepreneurship Pledge, Kiplinger-Kennedy recently launched the Inland Empire Entrepreneur Network website to connect students, faculty, and community members to the region’s entrepreneurship resources.

The site includes information about entrepreneurship partners, a listing of upcoming events, and the opportunity to join a community focused on entrepreneurship and making the most of the gig economy.

“It is so exciting to be launching this site that will serve as a community platform for all things entrepreneurial and innovative,” Kiplinger-Kennedy said. “The Event page is going to really play a key role in bringing together the Region to developing a more evolved innovation ecosystem to foster new ideas for technologies and businesses that will propel the economy of the region forward.”

Learn more about the Inland Empire Entrepreneur Network at enetie.com/.