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MDC North Campus’ Carrie P. Meek Entrepeneurial Education Center Celebrated its 20th Anniversary

Meek Center Anniversary

(L to R) North Campus President Jose A. Vicente, MDC Board of Trustees Chair Helen Aguirre Ferre, Retired Congresswoman Carrie P. Meek, Meek Center Executive Director H. Leigh Toney, and President of the Miami-Dade Chamber of Commerce Bill Diggs

Miami, April 8, 2010 - Miami Dade College’s (MDC) North Campus Carrie P. Meek Entrepreneurial Education Center celebrated its 20th Anniversary yesterday. Joining the festivities, along with MDC President, Dr. Eduardo J. Padrón, was former Congresswoman Carrie P. Meek and many other community leaders.

In 1989, MDC opened the Entrepreneurial Education Center, becoming the only institution of higher education with an academic center in the important Liberty City community.  The Center was designed by local architect Ron Frazier.  Although Liberty City, a historically African-American community of working and middle class families, experienced a series of tumultuous civil disturbances throughout the 1980s, MDC’s leadership team, committed to serve the community, established the Center to focus on supporting entrepreneurship, business and community development. The presence of the Center was heralded as an important achievement for the community and a bona fide effort to catalyze new business and job creation in a community grappling with increasingly high rates of unemployment, low educational attainment, and poverty. 

In 2006, the Center was officially renamed the Carrie P. Meek Entrepreneurial Education Center in honor of retired Congresswoman Carrie P. Meek, in recognition of her role in securing funding to create the Center and for tirelessly representing South Florida for so many years at the state and federal levels.  The Meek Center currently serves more than 3,000 students in a variety of academic disciplines, including its specialty programs in business and entrepreneurship.  Its enrollment has grown steadily over the past 20 years and plays a vital role in the overall educational, social, economic and community development efforts of Liberty City and the surrounding community.  The Center is especially known for its work in youth entrepreneurship, having launched the Institute for Youth Entrepreneurship (IYE) Program in 2003. The IYE program provides year-round entrepreneurship training and experience for high school students and led to the creation of a career certificate program in Entrepreneurship, open to the college age and high school dual enrollment program students.

“The Meek Center shall continue to be an educational anchor in the community.  Many things have changed in the last 20 years, but the vital role the Meek Center plays in ensuring that all sectors of our community are able to access higher education – in their own communities – remains a constant force as our economy shifts toward more knowledge-based careers,” said Dr. José A. Vicente, President of the North Campus.  “As Florida rebounds from the economic recession, the Meek Center is uniquely positioned to help ensure that all residents are equipped to benefit by providing the necessary training.”

For more information, please contact the Meek Center at (305) 237-1903.

Media-only contacts:
Juan Mendieta, 305-237-7611,, MDC communications director
Tere Estorino, 305-237-3949,, MDC media relations director
Sue Arrowsmith, 305-237-3710,, media specialist
Alejandro Rios, 305-237-7482,
Tarnell Carroll, 305-237-3359,, media specialist

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