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Small Business Development Center Helps Save 1,400 Jobs at Goodwill of Orange County

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Amid the COVID-19 pandemic, Goodwill of Orange County was determined to uphold its mission of helping those facing barriers to find and keep jobs. With the assistance of the Small Business Development Center at Cal State Fullerton, the nonprofit was able to retain its staff and fulfill that promise. 

Like with many social enterprises, the COVID-19 pandemic proved a challenge to Goodwill of Orange County. The organization’s president and CEO, Nicole Suydam, reached out to U.S. Rep. Lou Correa for help. 

Correa ’80 (B.A. economics) referred Suydam to the Small Business Development Center at CSUF, his alma mater. Leveraging its resources, the SBDC was able to secure Paycheck Protection Program funding and the nonprofit was able to retain its staff and continue its work.

While normally recognized for its work with for-profit startups, the SBDC expanded its focus to assist nonprofits during the pandemic. Mike Daniel, regional director of the SBDC, notes the pandemic has shown a critical need for supporting nonprofits. 

“Programs like the SBDC at CSUF exist to assist the community with resources, such as PPP. The SBDC plays an integral role in this process and continues to be an invaluable asset,” said Daniel ’99 (B.A. business administration-marketing). 

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Karen Lindell