Cayuga Community College is accepting applications for the Young Entrepreneurs Academy (YEA!), a free initiative helping middle and high school students research and start their own business or nonprofit agency.

An eight-month after school program that inspires students to develop their entrepreneurial skills, YEA! has helped thousands of students ages 11-18 start their own businesses. Classes will be led by Cayuga’s talented faculty, and will feature opportunities to explore regional businesses and guest appearances by local industry leaders.

With the help of a dedicated support team, students will complete all the steps to start their business, from designing their initial plan to conducting market research and pitching their proposal to potential investors. YEA! also helps students develop networking and leadership skills, plus offers a chance for students to win college scholarships.

YEA! classes meet once a week, and will start in October. Cayuga is hosting an information session for interested students and their parents on Aug. 5 in the Business Industry Center at the College’s Auburn Campus. The session opens at noon, and light refreshments will be provided. Please RSVP to Program Manager Pam Heleen at

There is no fee to apply to YEA!, and there is no fee for students who are accepted into the program. Interested students are encouraged to apply as soon as possible. Applications and more information are available by emailing

The Young Entrepreneurs Academy

The Young Entrepreneurs Academy (YEA!) is a 501(C) 3 offering groundbreaking year-long classes that teach middle and high school students how to start and run their own businesses. Throughout the class, students develop business ideas, write business plans, conduct market research, pitch their plans to a panel of investors for startup funds, and launch and run their own, fully formed companies and social movements. The project-based program empowers students to take charge of their futures.

Founded in 2004 at the University of Rochester with support from the Kauffman Foundation, YEA! today serves thousands of students nationwide. In 2011, the United States Chamber of Commerce Foundation became a national sponsor and partner of the Academy to help celebrate the spirit of enterprise among today's youth and tomorrow's future leaders.

YEA! bridges the business and educational communities to fulfill its mission of teaching more students how to make a job, not just take a job. YEA! is made possible by The Kauffman Foundation, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation and the E. Philip Saunders Foundation. For more information, visit

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