Sierra Nevada College is welcoming 14 South African entrepreneurs, ages 24-35, to the Lake Tahoe area to complete (non-paid) internships and develop their entrepreneurial skills. Sierra Nevada College is seeking both internship providers and home hosts for these visitors from February 22nd through March 31st. The ideal business hosts would be engaged in the following fields within the Reno-Tahoe area: IT or telecommunications, tourism and hospitality, office solutions, or health and beauty products. Internships will last six weeks and the entrepreneurs will intern Monday through Thursday each week. On Fridays, the interns will be studying to receive an entrepreneurship certificate through Sierra Nevada College.

Northern Nevada International Center (NNIC) and Sierra Nevada College in Lake Tahoe have been awarded a $352,000 grant by the U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs to host 25 South African entrepreneurs over a two-year period.  This is the second cohort of the Young Entrepreneurs Program grant.

The benefits to businesses for hosting a South African entrepreneur are manifold—the young entrepreneurs will bring fresh ideas and creative energy to their internship hosts while they learn about American business practices. Additionally, selected U.S. mentors will travel to South Africa for 10 days in June/July to follow up with the interns, provide coaching for other start-up businesses, and learn about the South African business climate. According to the Global Entrepreneurship Monitor (GEM), South Africa has the lowest entrepreneurial activity rate of all developing countries. It also has the lowest rate of new company start-ups. The Young Entrepreneurship Program (YEP) is aimed at increasing the understanding of the linkage between entrepreneurism and free markets, creating business relationships, and stimulating entrepreneurial activity.

Businesses or home hosts interested in participating in this project by hosting a young entrepreneur should contact Shannon Huddy at shuddy@sierranevada.edu.
 

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