EAC’s SBDC graduates those from Graham and Greenlee counties at DreamBuilder ceremony

Contributed Photo: Graham Dreambuilder graduates include, back row, from left, Torey Cranford, Mary Doogan, Kalynn Artman, Yesenia Gonzales, Kelli Reed, Alexandria Rhodes, Emaleah Davis, Jennifer Roberts, and Chelsie Candela; front row, from left, Kelli-Marie McNair, Debby Nelson, Vianna Young, Loa Beals, and Aunalisa Haynes. Not pictured are Greenlee graduates Joyann Hernandez, Emma Horroks, Crystal Soto, and Jimi Jones.

By Torey Cranford/EAC SBDC

THATCHER — Eastern Arizona College’s Small Business Development Center (EAC SBDC) held a graduation ceremony on May 3 at the Morenci Lounge for four local women who completed the 2023 Greenlee County DreamBuilder cohort. The online courses and supplemental workshops taught by EAC SBDC Business Analyst Torey Cranford started on February 22 and were held weekly up to graduation.

  “During the last eight years, 94 women in Graham and Greenlee have graduated from the DreamBuilder program. As a previous graduate of the program, and current facilitator, my favorite part is the relationships that develop through the class and the opportunities to get to know other female entrepreneurs,” said Cranford. 

DreamBuilder, funded by Freeport-McMoRan and created by the ASU Thunderbird School, is a unique online business training program designed for women to assist them in starting or growing their own businesses. The DreamBuilder program consists of 13 online courses that walk users through the basics of starting a business while simultaneously building a business plan. The EAC SBDC developed nine in-depth workshops to accompany the online program; these supplemental lessons provide a richer learning experience for the participants.

The EAC SBDC extends their gratitude to Martha Lujan, social performance manager – FMI Morenci Operations, Hannah Colvin, project manager for DreamBuilder from ASU Thunderbird School, and 2016 DreamBuilder graduate and Mayor of Clifton, Laura Dorrell, for attending and speaking to the graduates.