The Anne Arundel Workforce Development Corporation (AAWDC) announced that eight veterans have successfully completed the Project Opportunity training program and graduated in a ceremony at the Youth Employment Center in Glen Burnie on Tuesday, March 18. The graduates are: Howard Biddle, Janeen Birkhead, Patricia Buckley, Greg Coster, Chuck Davis, Regina Gillens, Jason Harris and Emma McClain.
An AAWDC-funded, 10-week veteran’s training program, Project Opportunity supports entrepreneurship through education, mentorship, loan opportunities and business development and planning.
“I founded Project Opportunity in the fall of 2010 and have since trained 100 veterans and graduated 81 in the state of Maryland,” explained Joe Giordano, founder of Project Opportunity. “This is the first time we have done training in collaboration with AAWDC and the results are excellent.”
“Not only are we giving veterans the knowledge and tools to create wealth by starting their own businesses, this program also has a positive effect on Anne Arundel County’s economy and creates employment opportunities for our residents,” said Kirkland Murray, CEO and President of AAWDC.
“I had the good fortune of working with Joe and Project Opportunity previously in Howard County, so I know firsthand the value of this program,” said County Executive Laura Neuman. “Congratulations to all of our graduates. I know that they are well-prepared to enter into this new phase of their careers and I hope they will pursue their dreams right here in Anne Arundel County.”
One of the graduates, Chuck Davis, has already started his window-cleaning business, Kiss My Glass of USA (http://kissmyglassofusa.com/). “This program, although rigorous, set me on a path for success,” explained Mr. Davis. “With the tools I learned, I can now develop and refine my business plan and prepare for anticipated growth in the future.”
The guest speaker was Anne Arundel Economic Development’s President/CEO Ed Rothstein and the sponsors were Mission BBQ and Alan I. Elkin, CEO of Advance.