Saint Peter’s University Signs Agreement with Rising Tide Capital to Support Rising Entrepreneurs in New Jersey

Jersey City, N.J. – June 6, 2013 – Saint Peter’s University and Rising Tide Capital today signed a historic agreement which enables qualified graduates of Rising Tide’s 12-week Community Business Academy (CBA) to receive up to six college credits through  prior learning experience from the School of Professional and Continuing Studies at Saint Peter’s University. Rising Tide Capital is a non-profit organization based in Jersey City, N.J., which supports women, minorities and immigrants to start and grow successful businesses in low-income, urban communities. This evening, 82 entrepreneurs graduated from the CBA.

“We are incredibly grateful to Saint Peter’s University for making this historic moment possible,” said Alfa Demmellash, CEO of Rising Tide Capital. “For many of our entrepreneurs, a college degree just isn’t within reach. With this innovative new partnership, they will have their first opportunity to obtain college credit.”

The NationalCenter for Education Statistics reports that there are more entrepreneurship and small business certificate programs than ever before. But according to Demmellash, these programs, which can cost thousands of dollars, are out of reach for many of the low-to-moderate income entrepreneurs that the nonprofit serves. To meet this need, Rising Tide Capital offers a tuition waiver to every CBA participant; Saint Peter’s University will offer the credits at no additional cost.

“We are extremely pleased to be a part of this pioneering initiative with our long-time partners at Rising Tide Capital,” said Eugene J. Cornacchia, Ph.D., president of Saint Peter’s University. “We believe that this agreement will not only stimulate the local economy in Hudson County, but will also provide a model for progressive higher education programs across the United States. We hope to continue to expand our relationship with Rising Tide Capital on future initiatives and seek additional opportunities to partner with other organizations in Hudson County.”

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Saint Peter’s University, inspired by its Jesuit, Catholic identity, commitment to individual attention and grounding in the liberal arts, educates a diverse community of learners in undergraduate, graduate and professional programs to excel intellectually, lead ethically, serve compassionately and promote justice in our ever-changing urban and global environment.

Community Business Academy, founded in 2006, provides entrepreneurs with the tools, concepts and skills needed to plan and operate a successful business. Classes are currently offered in high-unemployment communities in Jersey City, Union City, Newark and the City of Orange Township on weekday evenings and Saturday mornings.  To date, 648 entrepreneurs have graduated from the program with the assistance of a tuition-waiver. To learn more, visit