New Orleans Business Alliance And UNO To Build Stronger Neighborhoods With Community Development Finance Certificate Program


NEW ORLEANS — Applications are now open for the Community Development Finance Certificate Program, a curriculum designed to help build stronger, more economically viable neighborhoods in New Orleans.

The classes are offered by the New Orleans Business Alliance through the University of New Orleans's Extended Campus and Department of Planning and Urban Studies. The City of New Orleans Office of Economic & Community Development supports the program.

As part of NOLABA’s Strategic Neighborhood Development Initiative, which fosters development through a cohesive and intentional community vision, the Community Development Finance program provides students with best practices and tools needed to bring community development projects to fruition. 

The course is open to anyone with professional experience in community development, including public sector employees working to create economic growth in difficult-to-develop areas, and private sector investors, property owners and developers seeking profit while also strengthening communities through better equity. 

“This community development program is a shining example of how New Orleans can work together to intentionally and positively impact all of our neighborhoods with smart growth and equity-focused urban planning. We are proud to partner with the University of New Orleans to offer this one of a kind program,” said President and CEO of the New Orleans Business Alliance Quentin L. Messer, Jr.

Through six courses offered from September 5 to May 1, 2019 students will meet over 30 weeks in small classroom settings to deepen their knowledge of the complex issues requiring community collaboration in the neighborhood redevelopment process. They will learn the basics of financing community development, forming public-private partnerships, and investigate case studies in community development.

“This curriculum was designed to provide an intense overview of the many components of Community Development and Community Development Finance,” said UNO Course Instructor Alexandra Stroud. “One of the most important components of building a stronger New Orleans is building expertise and capacity within the community development fields on all sides of the development effort.  We want to be a partner with all sectors (public, private, banking) to support successful grassroots community development.”

A few select scholarships will be offered to individuals to help cover tuition fees. The application deadline is August 17.

“As New Orleans grows we need to ensure a conscientious approach to development that protects the integrity of each neighborhood, while helping neighborhoods achieve their aspirations and utilize their assets,” said Director of NOLABA’s Strategic Neighborhood Development Initiative Asali DeVan Ecclesiates. “Equipping real estate and property developers in in our Strategic Neighborhoods is a critical step in creating economically vibrant communities that serve all citizens.”

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