Mayor Walsh to Celebrate Graduates of UMass Boston Co-Led Early Education Business Center Saturday

Colleen Locke | March 17, 2016
Graduate Eulah Rogers gets a hug from Boston Mayor Marty Walsh while Anne Douglass (right of mayor) looks on.

Graduate Eulah Rogers gets a hug from Boston Mayor Marty Walsh while Anne Douglass (right of mayor) looks on.
Image by: Bessie Tartt Wilson Initiative for Children

"The center can be a national model for building inclusive, innovative, and thriving entrepreneurial ecosystems.

UMass Boston and Other Partners Designed and Launched Early Education and Care Small Business Innovation Center in 2015

Anne Douglass, the program director of the bachelor’s and post master’s certificate programs in early education and care in UMass Boston’s College of Education and Human Development, will be among those meeting with Boston Mayor Marty Walsh on Saturday about a new UMass Boston partnership that’s providing support to predominately women-run early education and care businesses in Roxbury.

Together with other partners, Douglass and Assistant Professor of Management Banu Özkazanç-Pan helped design and launch the Early Education and Care Small Business Innovation Center last year with the goal of building long-term financial stability. Located at Madison Park High School in Roxbury, it’s the first-of-its-kind center in the state, providing access to technology, business training, mentoring, and networking opportunities. Walsh will be discussing challenges and opportunities with the first 17 graduates of the center’s program Saturday at 8 a.m. at the center.

“Small local businesses are the primary provider of early care and education in Boston and in the U.S.,” Douglass said. “There is a huge unmet demand for business supports for these early education providers. When providers gain new skills and resources for strengthening the financial side of their business, they are then able to invest more of their time and resources in the quality of the services they provide.”

"The unique programming and outreach efforts of the center ensures that business resources, skills, and networks required for stabilizing and growing these businesses are available to the diverse business owners in this industry. By understanding and addressing the specific business needs of these entrepreneurs, the center can be a national model for building inclusive, innovative, and thriving entrepreneurial ecosystems," Özkazanç-Pan added.

UMass Boston’s partners on this project are the Bessie Tartt Wilson Initiative for Children, the City of Boston, and Tech Goes Home. Lynne Mendes, the early childhood education program specialist in UMass Boston’s Department of Curriculum and Instruction, was the lead trainer for the first cohort.

About UMass Boston
The University of Massachusetts Boston is deeply rooted in the city's history, yet poised to address the challenges of the future. Recognized for innovative research, metropolitan Boston’s public university offers its diverse student population both an intimate learning environment and the rich experience of a great American city. UMass Boston’s 11 colleges and graduate schools serve more than 17,000 students while engaging local and global constituents through academic programs, research centers, and public service. To learn more, visit

Tags: business , college of education and human development , college of management , early education

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