Students get business advice from entrepreneurship conference

Updated: Apr 10, 2019

The Business Department and Club co-organized a conference for people to get advice in forming a career path.

By Gabriel Arizon, Co-Editor-in-Chief

The Valley Star/Gabriel Arizon

The Valley College Business Administration Department and Business Club hosted an Entrepreneurship Conference filled with 160 attendees to learn from experts and professors on how to start their business and enhance their skills. The Business Administration Department hosted its third annual conference on Nov. 16, offering six hour-long breakout sessions to attendees, where the professionals and faculty could interact with them.

Attendees could only choose one of the sessions: a Start-Up Boot Camp, an Entrepreneurship Retreat, Awareness Through an Entrepreneurial Mindset, Showcasing a Career in Animation, Film and Media, Turning a Passion from Fitness to a World Wide Journey and Accounting, Taxation and Financial Planning.

“The vision for this event is to change the mindset of all of our attendees,” Business Club President Gayane Hovhannisyan said. “Change the way you think, learn something new, walk away from this conference having met someone new.”

Professor Tasos Sioukas hosted the boot camp session, which is designed to help others create a business plan. The boot camp is funded by the Strong Workforce Program of California (an initiative aimed at boosting the number of skilled workers produced by community colleges) and is free. It is to take place in mid-Spring 2019 on Saturday afternoons over the course of six weeks.

While anyone can participate, Professor Sioukas said it is ideal for those who have taken Business 1 and Management 13, as well as those, eager about it and not those who only have a mild interest in the program.

“Basically, we work [with] students from an idea to a full market frame, giving them the boost to get started,” Sioukas said. “In order to get your business started, the most important thing is to take action, not to think about it and keep planning it.”

Another session was hosted by Steven T. Seagle, a writer that has worked with comics, television, animation, film and live theater. He co-created the Marvel superhero group, Big Hero 6, and is part of Man of Action Studios, which created the animated series “Ben 10.” His session was about his experience in the entertainment industry and giving advice to students.

“I was a terrible college student, very unclear about what I was doing, so I like to come back and talk to people and say that’s ok, it will all work out,” Seagle said. “The thing I get too much of is I want to write or I want to be in film or whatever … and I say pick one. I think you have to define who you are in the entertainment industry.”

While the attendance was lower than the 300 at last year’s conference, Professor Kevin Sanford was pleased with the student reception.

“Several students came up to me and thanked me for inviting them so they could actually hear the speakers,” Sandford said, “and I talked to different students that were in each of the sessions, and so they all got something out of each of them, which is actually pretty impressive. If you’re not here, you’re missing out on the opportunity.”

To sign up for the boot camp or the entrepreneurial retreat, contact Sanford at or Sioukas at There is currently no deadline to sign up.