Governor's Office for Local Development
Youth Entrepreneurship Program Receives Governor Fletcher’s Recommendation for Funding

Press Release Date:  Friday, May 26, 2006  
Contact Information:  Samantha Cook
Public Information Officer

          Governor Ernie Fletcher and the Governor’s Office for Local Development (GOLD) today recommended for funding a $36,300 Appalachian Regional Commission (ARC) grant for the Center for Rural Development.  Funds will be used for the Youth Entrepreneurship Program.  The funding status of the project is pending approval from the federal level.

            “It is important for the youth of this state to be given every advantage to succeed,” said Governor Fletcher.  “This will encourage our young people to begin thinking about their future and all the potential that it holds.”

            ARC funds will be used to assist in conducting a week-long summer institute for youth entrepreneurs in a 42-county service region hosted by the Center for Rural Development.  The program will include training, speakers, business tours and a business competition that will tie into the Excellence in Entrepreneurships Awards program held each year by Eastern Kentucky University, the Center for Rural Development and the Kentucky Highlands Investment Corporation.

            Thirty students will be selected to participate in the institute program where they will learn from experts in the field and work to develop a business concept throughout the week.  ARC funds will be utilized to develop the program curriculum and provide thirty $1,000 scholarships to cover costs of attendance for students from Appalachian counties.

            Governor Fletcher is the current ARC States’ Co-Chair.  As states’ co-chair, Governor Fletcher is responsible for representing the 13 ARC governors before Congress and the Bush Administration; serve as a member of various ARC committees; and provide guidance on policy and administrative issues concerning the commission. 

            ARC is a federal-state economic development program used to meet infrastructure needs as well as to support education, workforce development, leadership and civic capacity building, entrepreneurship, asset-based development and affordable and accessible health care. ARC is federally funded and available to Kentucky’s 51 most eastern and south-central counties. Applications for ARC funds are submitted to GOLD.