March 28, 2023

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Nashville entrepreneur program holds largest graduation yet

The Academy, an entrepreneur program designed to benefit low-income communities, held its largest graduation yet on Tuesday with 150 graduates.

“This is a neighborhood block party and neighborhood celebration so people can know that they are rooting for them, they’re proud of them,” said Shana Berkeley, executive director of Corner to Corner.

Corner to Corner, the nonprofit that sponsors The Academy, held the graduation near downtown Nashville. Students, families and friends convened at Rocketown, a “faith-based youth outreach facility” founded by Christian music artist Michael W. Smith.

Shana Berkeley, executive director of Corner to Corner, stands on the stage with graduates of The Academy.

The Academy offers a high-quality curriculum for young entrepreneurs, according to Berkeley.

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“The Academy is our entrepreneurship program where we help underestimated entrepreneurs plan, start, and grow their own small businesses,” Berkeley said. “As somebody who has a doctorate degree, I knew the quality of the education in the curriculum.”