2 Monus Fellows Serving with YBI Companies

YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio – Two Youngstown State University seniors have been named as the inaugural Monus Fellows at the Youngstown Business Incubator.

Dominika Lackova and Corey Patrick, both business students from YSU’s Williamson College of Business Administration, will each be assigned to one and possibly two portfolio companies at YBI during the fellowship, which takes place during summer and fall semesters.

The program, a partnership between YBI and YSU’s Williamson College, provides business students interested in entrepreneurship with real-life opportunities to develop their knowledge and skills by working with local entrepreneurs on their ventures, according to a YBI news release announcing the program.

During the program, fellows will complete projects such as market research, preparation of financial statements and projections, project management, marketing, and sales forecasting.

“The goal of this program is to offer the best and brightest business students from YSU the opportunity to actively engage in the startup experience, gain real world experience, and walk away with transferrable skills that can be used to help them in their careers or their own startup ventures,” Brittany Housel, YBI’s director of program management, said. “These students walk away with career-related work experience and are able to position themselves to be competitive in the job market upon graduation.”

WCBA’s Entrepreneurship Center is a key partner in the initiative.

“The Monus Endowment will be used to support the Monus Fellows stipend, marketing of the program, and other program-related expenses,” said Betty Jo Licata, dean of the Williamson College.  “The Monus Endowment was established to support entrepreneurial education at Youngstown State University and the economic development of the Mahoning Valley.”

Lackova, of Bratislava, Slovakia, is a senior business economics major with a minor in entrepreneurship. Patrick, of Struthers, is a senior finance and marketing double major, entrepreneurship minor. Both students already are engaged with two YBI startups, Vantage Solutions and 3D Printerworks.

Lackova “brings an aggressive attitude and youthful presence to our team.  Our hopes are to leverage her current skill set and build out more applied skills as she helps us grow our product, Reach,” said Paul Burgoyne, co-founder of Vantage Solutions.

Benjamin Kilar, co-founder of 3D Printerworks, said he “didn’t know what to expect” at first. That changed the first day Patrick came to the office, “He immediately ‘took over’ marketing and social media for our business. Corey is extremely knowledgeable and passionate of what he does. We expect to see sales to rise in the following weeks, because of Corey’s techniques,” he said.

YBI and YSU already are looking for the next cohort of students for the fall and spring semester rotation of the program.

“Overlapping the student’s experience allows for a peer mentorship to happen amongst the fellows. It’s all about making it a world-class experience for YSU students – they are the future of our city,” Housel said.

Copyright 2022 The Business Journal, Youngstown, Ohio.