Success Story

Golden LEAF supports entrepreneurship in the Sandhills

In Robeson County, University of North Carolina at Pembroke’s Thomas Entrepreneurship Hub was awarded funding in phases by Golden LEAF to provide business support to area entrepreneurs. In 2012, Golden LEAF provided $200,000 to support renovations to the entrepreneurship incubator in downtown Pembroke.

In 2020, Golden LEAF awarded $480,000 to UNCP’s Thomas Entrepreneurship Hub to support a regional outreach effort through the Sandhills Entrepreneurship Engagement Network (SEEN). SEEN is helping expand the entrepreneurial incubator into the greater Sandhills region by providing entrepreneurs with a multitude of resources to build successful businesses. One of the main components of this program is a database that provides a comprehensive list of available resources throughout the 10-county region.

“We practice a culture of collaboration and partner with many entrepreneur support organizations including InnovateNC, NC Growth, NC Idea, EDPNC, SENC, Partners in Progress, Columbus Jobs Foundation, CiS, and each community college in the region,” said Thomas Hall, Executive Director, Thomas Family Center for Entrepreneurship, and Incubator at UNCP. “Since 2016, the UNCP entrepreneurship incubator has worked with 213 startups and helped create 147 jobs.”

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