Venture For America Hosts 2019 Regional Job Fair in Cleveland

VFA partners with Northeast Ohio supporters to help diverse entrepreneurs connect with talent at Midwest Job Fair.

April 12, 2019

Venture For America, a two-year fellowship program for recent college graduates, and KeyBank Business Build and Boost program have teamed up to help local business owners grow their teams and attract diverse talent to Northeast Ohio.

On April 12th from 10am-5pm, Venture For America, which identifies recent college graduates who want to learn how to build businesses, create economic opportunities and become entrepreneurs, will host its Midwest Job Fair. The event will bring together more than 50 members of the 2019 Fellow class to interview with 40 startups based in Cleveland, Ohio and the Midwest region. The current class of incoming Fellows are graduates of over 90 colleges and universities, including Case Western Reserve University, The Ohio State University, Duke, Stanford, Xavier University, and the University of Dayton, among others.

“Our intention is to create an inclusive entrepreneurial and tech ecosystem in Cleveland,” said Gloria Ware, director of the KeyBank Center for Technology, Innovation & Inclusive Growth at Jumpstart. “We’re thrilled to support the VFA Midwest Job Fair because of the impact and opportunity we have to increase the diversity of Venture For America Fellows and of the company partners who hire them.”

The event connects VFA Fellows with startup companies to help bring more talent to Cleveland, Northeast Ohio, and the Midwest region. Fellows interview with local and regional startups including Cleveland-based Proformex, Gravitas Ventures, and TPA Stream; Columbus-based Scriptdrop, Grypmat, and iKove Capital; as well as with companies based in Detroit, Pittsburgh, St. Louis and New Orleans.

“I’m delighted Venture For America selected Cleveland to host our Midwest Job Fair. The city’s and region’s entrepreneurial ecosystem is growing and this is a fantastic opportunity to showcase our companies and our supporters to the next class of VFA Fellows,” said Carrie Murphy, VFA’s Director of Northeast Ohio.

Cleveland has welcomed more than 65 Fellows since VFA expanded into the city in 2013 and more than 25 Cleveland-based startups have hired them. This year, Venture For America plans to help nearly 20 recent college graduates select Cleveland as their new home. Currently, 15+ program Alumni live in Cleveland.

In March, Venture for America announced that its 4-month residential 2019 accelerator program will be held in Cleveland. The VFA Accelerator offers budding Fellow-Founders the opportunity to work full-time, connect with local resources, and find valuable mentors to accelerate their ventures. Accelerator participants will co-work in the Midtown Tech Hive. The program kicks off in August 2019 with a launch event and concludes with a demo event in November 2019. The program was previously held in Philadelphia, Pa. and Detroit, Mi.

Venture For America operates programs in Ohio in Cleveland, Columbus and Cincinnati, which are collectively supported by The Cleveland Foundation, Gund Foundation, Burton D. Morgan Foundation, Keybank Business Build & Boost program powered by Jumpstart, The Columbus Foundation, The Carol Ann and Ralph V. Haile, Jr./U.S. Bank Foundation, and The Ohio Third Frontier.

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