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Small-business aid grants go to Hofstra, Suffolk County Community College

Programs at Hofstra University, pictured here, and Suffolk

Programs at Hofstra University, pictured here, and Suffolk County Community College will share grants of nearly $176,000 to help aspiring small business owners, officials said. Photo Credit: Newsday / Chuck Fadely

Programs at Hofstra University and Suffolk County Community College will share grants of nearly $176,000 to help aspiring small-business owners, officials said.

Each school's Entrepreneurial Assistance Program will receive $88,000 from Empire State Development, New York's primary business-aid agency.

The funds will pay for counselors and others who aid people interested in starting a small business. Counselors provide training on how to write a business plan, obtain loans and other financing, and manage a company.

Hofstra secured its first state grant for this purpose in 1990, SCCC in 1994. To date, Hofstra has received $548,000 for its entrepreneurial program, SCCC $629,500, records show.

Joyce Smith, statewide director of the entrepreneurial program, said last week the program also helps minority- and women-owned businesses become certified to compete for government contracts.

Separately, the colleges also will receive money from the state Department of State to hold workshops for recent immigrants about starting a business. Hofstra will receive $6,000 and SCCC, $3,000.

These grants are part of Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo's 2013 Office for New Americans initiative designed to help immigrants through the citizenship process, to learn English and develop job skills.

On Long Island, the office works with Literacy Nassau, the Nassau Economic Opportunity Commission and the immigrant advocacy group Make the Road, each of which operates a center that serves immigrants.

The colleges will work with these groups to put on Starting Your Own Business seminars for two years. As many as eight seminars will be given annually.

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