AT&T Contributes $10,000 to Youth Entrepreneurship Program in South Bend

Author: Brad Rateike, AT&T Public Affairs

South Bend, Indiana – August 10, 2011 – AT&T Indiana President George S. Fleetwood today announced that the company will contribute $10,000 to help fund the Robinson Community Learning Center (RCLC) Youth Entrepreneurship Program.  The program aims to provide information, inspiration and opportunity to local low-and


 moderate-income high school youth through innovative teaching and entrepreneurship curriculum to help improve school retention and workforce readiness.   

“Providing opportunities for tomorrow’s leaders to acquire skills that will contribute to their future success is one of the best investments any company can make,” said Tim Sexton, associate vice president for public affairs at the University of Notre Dame, at a press conference today in South Bend. “AT&T has long been a supporter of the University of Notre Dame and we appreciate their partnership in our efforts to develop the next generation of young entrepreneurs.” 

The program focuses on cultivating entrepreneurial thinking and problem-solving skills in youth as they respond to challenges in an innovative and opportunistic manner. Students receive instruction in financial literacy and entrepreneurship concepts, as well as the opportunity to participate in the creation of business experiences that provide an opportunity for them to "cut their teeth" on common business problems and activities.  This includes the areas of sales, customer service, operations and record keeping--skills and experiences that will ultimately enable them to compete in the open marketplace and access a wider range of future employment possibilities.

“The youth of our community are our most precious resource,” said Fleetwood. “The young entrepreneurs of today will develop into the business leaders that companies like AT&T will look to for leadership in the future.”

Since 2003 the Robinson Community Learning Center has provided instruction and hands-on training to local youth in the areas of financial literacy and entrepreneurship in order to address the dual problems of high school retention and work-force preparedness. The program has been supported by The Gigot Center for Entrepreneurial Studies at the Mendoza College of Business since its inception.  Notre Dame undergraduate student mentors are matched to work one-on-one with the youth entrepreneurs as they progress through the various stages of business literacy. The partnership yields a Summer Biz Camp and an Entrepreneurship class, delivered during the academic year, which culminates in the annual business plan competition. Students can then move onto Robinson Enterprises and apply the skills learned in the youth entrepreneurship program.

For more information on the Robinson Community Learning Center, please visit:

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