The Ohio Small Business Development Center (SBDC) at Youngstown State University is the national SBDC Excellence and Innovation Award winner for 2019. The award will be presented by the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) as part of the celebration of National Small Business Week, from May 5-11.
During National Small Business Week, the SBA recognizes the contributions of outstanding entrepreneurs, small business owners, and organizations that support America’s small businesses in all 50 states and U.S. territories. More than half of Americans either own or work for a small business, and small businesses create about two out of every three new jobs in the United States each year.
The Ohio SBDC at Youngstown State University is a partnership program supported by the U.S. Congress and the President, the SBA, the Ohio Development Services Agency and Youngstown State University. Through its programs and services, the SBDC at Youngstown State provides entrepreneurial development assistance, training programs and high-end business consulting to existing businesses and start-up ventures.
In 2018, the SBDC at Youngstown State devoted 7,035 counseling hours to assisting 279 clients, helping small businesses generate more than $96.87 million in new sales, creating 491 jobs and retaining 1,496 jobs. The Center also connected companies to $17.51 million in capital infusion.
Youngstown State University President and former Ohio State University football coach James Tressel, said, “We are very proud of the accomplishments of our Small Business Development Center at YSU…. Their recognition for excellence and innovation is a well-deserved honor.”
The Youngstown State SBDC is currently staffed by one full-time CBA® Director, Patricia Veisz, one full-time International Trade Advisor, Mousa Kassis, one full-time administrative assistant, Crystal Volinchak, and four independent consultants. The Center also employs two graduate assistants and three to five undergraduate interns per semester.
The Youngstown State University SBDC has been very successful leveraging student & faculty resources through the Williamson College of Business Administration at the University, which allows the Center to offer more extensive services to its clients. These include strategic marketing plans, management analyses, web site design, international market research, compliance manual work, and more. These additional, in-depth services create value for client companies, provide meaningful experience for Youngstown State business students, add to the University’s mission of economic development, and enhance the overall economic growth and development of the area.
“This award is well-earned recognition of the great work and impact of the Ohio SBDC at Youngstown State University,” said Charles “Tee” Rowe, President & CEO of America’s SBDC. “It is a reflection of the tremendous contributions of all of America’s SBDCs, supporting small businesses and aspiring entrepreneurs, creating jobs, and making the American dream of business ownership a reality for so many. We are so proud of the Ohio SBDC at Youngstown State and all of the SBDCs and small business clients who have won district, state, region and national awards this National Small Business Week.”