FirstBank granted a donation to Starting Point Inc. to conduct workshops for college students and social entrepreneurs from the University of Puerto Rico Mayagüez Campus, most of whom come from low- to moderate-income families.
The trainings focus on emerging businesses and existing social enterprises. The program will consist of on-site and online courses and workshops in the areas of non-traditional financing, accounting and finance for community enterprises, legal organizations, business models, and project proposals, among others. The training will run for approximately one year.
“Our aim is to continue promoting development in our communities, and our support of programs such as Starting Point is an example of this, as it seeks to advance community and business development by training university students,” said Catherine Ríos, community reinvestment officer at FirstBank.
“This program will have a positive social impact in our society by allowing young people to acquire the skills needed to develop and transform their community organizations and social enterprises, those emerging and those already in operation,” she said.
“It is important for our organization to receive the support of companies such as FirstBank; their donation allows us to strengthen [the UPR-Mayagüez] entrepreneurship ecosystem and encourage college students to start innovative social enterprises based on new business models, thus improving quality of life in their communities,” said José I. Vega-Torres, president of Starting Point Inc.
He offered the first workshop, titled “Marketing pitch for new products,” in which the students were trained in the elements involved in creating an effective business sales pitch, including a value proposition. Additionally, Zobeida Padilla, sales representative from the FirstBank branch at the Mayagüez Mall, offered a talk about budget management.
Starting Point Inc., a nonprofit organization founded in 2015, is composed of faculty and students, both graduate and undergraduate, from the UPR-Mayagüez.