NACCE Press Releases,


SPRINGFIELD, MA - - October 19, 2016 -- The National Association for Community College Entrepreneurship (NACCE), the nation’s leading organization focused on promoting entrepreneurship through community colleges, and the Appalachian Regional Commission (ARC) will co-sponsor a regional summit for high school and college educators and community leaders in Appalachia who are interested in expanding entrepreneurship curriculum in the region. The summit, “Entrepreneurship in Appalachia,” will be held November 17-18, 2016 at Big Sandy Community and Technical College in Prestonsburg, Kentucky.

“We hope this summit, which is open to all regional educators, will inspire attendees to adopt an entrepreneurial mindset that will help young people living in Appalachia find entrepreneurial pathways in their futures,” said Rebecca Corbin, Ed.D., president and CEO of NACCE.

The first 100 registrants for the summit will receive full scholarships to cover the cost of the two-day conference. All attendees will receive certification in entrepreneurship training for curricula that can be implemented immediately in the classroom. They will also be eligible to compete in a business pitch contest with a $5,000 prize for the winning school or campus. Additional cash prizes (made available through a recent POWER grant to expand e-ship programs in Appalachia), will also be awarded to high school teachers participating in the pitch contest.

Earlier this year, ARC helped underwrite the production of a two-part documentary, Creating Opportunity After Coal. The documentary, which was filmed at Big Sandy, highlights the work being done at the college to provide new career pathways for laid-off coal miners. It covers a range of entrepreneurial, traditional and emerging jobs that local workers are retraining for through the college.

“I believe the future of Appalachia hinges on our ability to embrace the entrepreneurial spirit of the people of Appalachia to compete and thrive in the 21st century digital economy,” said Devin Stephenson, Ed.D., president of Big Sandy. “I want to commend the Appalachian Regional Commission for its entrepreneurial leadership in bringing this important topic to the forefront of the regions it serves.”

Among the presenters at the summit are:

Devin Stephenson, Ed. D., president, Big Sandy Community and Technical College, Kentucky
Sarah Singer, Ph.D., assistant director of Michigan State University Center for International Business Education and Research, Michigan
Gene Coulson, Ed.D., executive director of the Consortium for Entrepreneurship Education, West Virginia
Kelli Hall, M.A., dean of Career Education and Workforce Development, Big Sandy Community and Technical College, Kentucky
Charles “Rusty” Justice, cofounder and managing member, Bit Source, LLC, Kentucky
Leah Deppert, marketing manager, NACCE
Darcie Tumey, Ed.D., director for Business Administration, Catawba Valley Community College, North Carolina
Holly Hanson, director, Cumberland Businesses Incubator, Tennessee
Guy Lowes, associate professor/division head, Applied & Industrial Technology, Southern West Virginia Community and Technical College, West Virginia
Rebecca Corbin, Ed.D., president and CEO, NACCE

About the ARC

About the Appalachian Regional Commission (

ARC is an economic development agency of the federal government and 13 state governments focusing on 420 counties across the Appalachian Region. ARC’s mission is to innovate, partner, and invest to build community capacity and strengthen economic growth in Appalachia to help the Region achieve socioeconomic parity with the nation.


The National Association for Community College Entrepreneurship (NACCE) is an organization of educators, administrators, presidents and entrepreneurs focused on inciting entrepreneurship in their community and on their campus. NACCE has two main goals: to empower the college to approach the business of running a community college with an entrepreneurial mindset; and to grow the community college’s role in supporting job creation and entrepreneurs in their local ecosystem. NACCE has over 330 member colleges, representing nearly 2,000 members and approximately 3.3 million students.

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