Featured photo: Graduating student Eduardo Correa-Peña poses in the Patton Building.
Marketing and Communications Dept.
Only one year after graduating high school, Eduardo Correa-Peña is preparing to join his brother in running the family business. The nineteen-year-old will graduate with the Class of 2022 with a diploma in Business Administration – Entrepreneurship.
Eduardo feels strongly about the importance of entrepreneurship in Western North Carolina and beyond.
“Entrepreneurship does a lot for the community because small businesses care more than big corporations. We take our job seriously because it’s our name brand,” he said.
In 2021, he graduated from North Henderson High School and planned to immediately begin working for the family business, A&G Guttering. He didn’t plan to go to college, but his parents and brothers encouraged him to go to Blue Ridge, not only for the family business but for himself. He agreed. Once he arrived at Blue Ridge, he found himself in a comfortable setting.
“The instructors care about your grades, they care about you,” Correa-Peña said.
He also expressed the relief he and his parents felt financially after he received the Brighter Futures scholarship, allowing him to focus fully on his education without the worries of finances.
Furthermore, he enjoyed his time at Blue Ridge.
“It was a lot of fun. Good people, good teachers, good administrators, especially the financial and general admissions team,” Correa-Peña said. “They really helped me out with my FAFSA, dropping classes and taking them again.”
Ben Kish served as Correa-Peña’s advisor and instructor. Eduardo described Kish’s instruction as eye-opening, particularly regarding time management.
“Mr. Kish taught me that you take a little at a time,” he said. “Make a task due by a certain time and when you feel like you’re getting better at it, do more and more and try to shorten the amount of time it takes.”
Correa-Peña has used those newly-acquired time management skills to formulate an expansion plan for the family business.
“We’re mostly in Western North Carolina, but we have family in Gastonia so we might expand there,” he said. “If we get more people who can appreciate and honor the family business, we can really get it going.”
The Entrepreneurship Diploma is a part of the Business Administration program. The Entrepreneurship Diploma provides students the opportunity to develop an understanding of the basics of the field of business administration as well as the entrepreneurial experience and the basics of planning and operating a small business.