UTICA — Utica Monday Nite (UMN For the Arts) received a $10,000 donation from Key Bank in support of its recently introduced Artist Refinery Program. The sprint program is designed for entrepreneurs interested in establishing a business in the creative arts and was developed in conjunction with ThINCubator, MVCC’s business development hub.
Angela Johnson DeCarlis, board president of UMN For the Arts, and board member Alyssa Spina, accepted the donation from Ron Klein, Jr., Key Bank’s Senior Area Retail Leader, and Corporate Responsibility and Community Relations Officer Tamika Otis, at a recent luncheon and check presentation ceremony.
“These types of entrepreneurial and business development programs are needed to spur local and regional economic activity,” Otis explained. “From a corporate responsibility standpoint, connecting that need to the arts and arts community is an initiative all of us at Key Bank are pleased to support. Their creativity contributes tremendously to the Utica community and we’re excited to have the opportunity to be part of that.”
“Key Bank’s generous donation is greatly appreciated and will go a long way in establishing this innovative program,” said DeCarlis. “It also demonstrates the amazing support from our local businesses when it comes to the arts. We’re grateful that they saw the long-term value a program like this brings to the community, and the positive impacts it will have economically, culturally, and socially.”
The Artist Refinery Program is an accelerated eight-week summer course offering the basics of a business start-up, including an entrepreneurial curriculum, guest speakers, and weekly deliverables from participants, who will exit the program with a robust set of skills and knowledge to develop and monetize their creative business.
Coursework covers building a business model, legal and financial considerations, marketing, logistics, and trending art technologies. Local artists and professionals will provide instruction and one-on-one coaching sessions. The eight-week summer session for emerging artists began May 25. A session for established artists is planned for the fall.