The voice of and for USM students


The voice of and for USM students


The voice of and for USM students


IDEAL Women hosts Black Business Expo

Raven Payne
Mbody was one of the many shops available at the IDEAL Women Black Business Expo.

IDEAL Women recently hosted a Black Business Expo to unlock opportunities and celebrate success for new small businesses. Students were invited to meet and shop with Black-owned businesses.

Makers Hale, the event chair for IDEAL Women, stated that their main goal was to support and elevate all businesses founded by Black people.

“During Black History Month, the Business Expo seeks to raise awareness of any nearby small black-owned businesses, both on and off campus,” Hale said. “Black local store owners in the Hattiesburg region are among the businesses, as are students operating on or off campus.”

The types of businesses and industries represented at the Expo are artistic vendors who hand craft items like jewelry, clothing, crochet items and accessories, as well as the Divine 9 Greek Vendors, and hair stylists who do hair as well as sell it. They also have a tutor who specializes in helping high school students prepare for the ACT so they can eventually enroll in their dream schools.

What IDEAL women predict for the turnout of the business expo are between ten and fifteen individuals who will stop by to browse or possibly make a purchase from one of their at least ten vendors. They anticipate that every half an hour or so. Students who attend in support may get the opportunity to network with people who share their business ideas.

They can have a one-on-one conversation about what the vendors sell, how they got started, and how they maintain consistency. Visitors may find inspiration to turn their current pastime into a lucrative business, just like some of the vendors who will be attending the Expo.

“Many small businesses in and around Hattiesburg have benefited from our Business Expo’s growth and expansion,” Hale added. “We provide every vendor and customer with the chance to grow not just as a company but also as a leader and business owner. We think that one individual or group is all it takes to start something new for others. We link people together so they may network, support, and inspire one another.”

IDEAL Women Federated Club is a collegiate branch of the National Association of Colored Women’s Clubs. It is the only collegiate branch of the NACWC in the State of Mississippi, and 1 of 22 in the entire nation. The NACWC is the oldest secular African American organization in existence today. It was organized on July 21, 1896.

IDEAL Women was chartered at USM on Feb. 27, 2003. The acronym IDEAL stands for Intelligent, Dignified, Elegant, Ambitious, Leaders.

IDEAL Women Federated Club currently has 37 members. The campus organization stands on the principles of education, responsibility, friendship, and professionalism.

If you want to see more events and be more involved with IDEAL Women, follow them on their Instagram page @usm_idealwomen_nacwc.

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