New Jersey Small Business Development Center (NJSBDC) at Brookdale held the first-ever Hispanic Entrepreneurial Expo. The Expo brought together all those entrepreneurs who completed the Bilingual Entrepreneur Certificate Program at Brookdale Community College and was an example of how the Latino community contributes to the small business economy. Exhibit categories included financial insurance, fine jewelry, food safety solutions, online boutique, custom printing services, and more.

“The results have been amazing,” said Dr. Jackeline Mejias-Fuertes, director of the Small Business Development Center. “Up to 98 percent of the individuals who have participated in the program have graduated. We developed this program after realizing there was a need and desire in the Latino community for assistance to start a business.”

The Expo exposed a new generation of Latino entrepreneurs and small business owners to the community. It allowed them to connect by networking and displaying their range of available products and services.

Participating businesses were Joyeria Plata Artesenal, Majestic Silvers; Elvira Ramirez Dominguez, Press T Designs, LLC; Anabel Rojas, Touchstone Crystal by Swarovski; Andres Rojas, Dreams Home Improvements and Landscaping; Gabriela and Francisco Soriano, National Financial Literacy Classes; Ashley’s Cleaning Services, LLC; Silvana Restrepo, Serve Food Safely Solutions; Primerica; Faith Boutique, LLC; Celeste Clean and Shine Services, LLC; Chamo’s Bagel & Grill; NJ Safe Cleaning, LLC.

“I am fortunate to have the opportunity to have my company participate in the first Hispanic Entrepreneur Expo, said Mrs. Aida Betancourt, owner of Ashley’s Cleaning. “The idea of ​​being part of the small business network at a fair was a dream come true. I am thankful for the valuable education and services provided through the NJSBDC Bilingual Entrepreneurship Certificate Program. My sincere thanks to the NJSBDC staff who made the event possible.”

The Entrepreneur Certificate Program offers training to help those looking to start or grow their own business. Topics include business planning, goal setting, financing, and marketing. The Monmouth/Ocean Small Business Development Center (MOSBDC) at Brookdale Community College and Ocean County College sponsor this 33-hour program. Take one course to improve your knowledge or take all the courses and receive an Entrepreneur Certificate.

For more information, call 732-842-8685 or visit