Goldman Sachs is launching the 10,000 Small Businesses Fellows Program in Dallas and three other pilot markets—New York City, Cleveland, and Baltimore. Kicking off during National Small Business Week, the program has two big goals: creating career pathways for students from community colleges and addressing the skills gap small businesses are currently facing, by facilitating hands-on internships.
“The right internship can have a big impact on a student’s career path,” said Asahi Pompey, global head of corporate engagement and president of the Goldman Sachs Foundation, in a statement. “10,000 Small Businesses Fellows gives students a front-row seat to entrepreneurship by coming into a small business and learning from some of our most successful alumni. They will learn the business, but they will also witness the passion.”
Partnering with Dallas College
The Dallas pilot program is rolling out in a partnership with Dallas College, the city’s network of community colleges including the El Centro, Brookhaven, Cedar Valley, Eastfield, Mountain View, North Lake, and Richland campuses.
“Connecting small businesses and talented students has always been a priority for community colleges,” said Dr. Joe May, chancellor of Dallas College, in the statement. “I’m thrilled to be partnering with Goldman Sachs 10,000 Small Businesses Fellows where we have the ability to place our students in internships so they can develop real work experiences and be ready for the workforce when they graduate.”
The program will create more than 250 work opportunities overall for college students in their fields of interest and small businesses. The paid internships will last a full semester and will be fully funded by the Goldman Sachs Foundation.
One Dallas student involved in the program says it’s opened up opportunities for him.
“Ever since I started school, I’ve been looking for positions that will enable me to have real-life experience using my strong organizational skills, educational background, and ability to work well with people,” said Dallas College student Joaquin Cano. “Goldman Sachs’ 10,000 Small Businesses Fellows matched me perfectly with a local business, where I know I’ll be able to flourish and take full advantage of the learning opportunities.”
Participants in the program will gain positive impacts even beyond the semester-long internships, by gaining access to a national network of the program’s alumni, business professionals, and Goldman Sachs experts who can all provide help on their career paths.
Workforce development is critical
Goldman Sachs believes the program’s investment in workforce development is critical to the nation’s economic recovery, by addressing longstanding obstacles that have limited the success of both small business owners and community college students.
10,000 Small Businesses Fellows is designed to connect pandemic-stricken small businesses with a steady workforce pipeline—saving the businesses the cost of recruiting new talent.
Front Porch, a Dallas marketing agency, sees the value in the internships’ opportunities for businesses.
“As we continue to rapidly expand our business and marketing efforts, finding qualified and deserving candidates is an absolute necessity,” said Julie Porter, “Chief Rocker” of Front Porch Marketing. “Goldman Sachs 10,000 Small Businesses Fellows is an incredible opportunity to develop a talent pipeline for my business while simultaneously giving my company the opportunity to mentor students who need it the most.”
Small businesses represent over 99 percent of employer firms
Goldman Sachs notes that small businesses employ nearly half of America’s workforce—and represent more than 99 percent of employer firms. But hiring essential workers remains an ongoing challenge, exacerbated by the pandemic.
Roles that are fundamental to business recovery are the highest in demand, yet the hardest to fill, the company found in a recent survey.
To help alleviate that, the Goldman Sachs program matches practical skill development consistent with the fellow’s field of study to work projects that can help drive business growth for small business owners.
Goldman has invested $750 million to help small businesses
The Fellows program is an extension of Goldman Sachs’ 10,000 Small Businesses, which the company says has invested $750 million to help small businesses across the U.S. The funding has gone to create jobs and economic growth through education, support services, and access to capital.
Over the past 10 years, more than 10,000 small businesses have been given entrepreneurial resources by the program. On average, 67 percent of 10,000 Small Businesses graduates grow revenues, and 47 percent create new jobs just six months after graduating, the company says.
To learn more about the Goldman Sachs program, visit here.
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