The Urban League of Louisiana, in partnership with Hancock Whitney, announced its third cohort of Scale Up! Louisiana for small businesses in East Baton Rouge Parish. Other partners and supporters include: the Small Business Administration – Louisiana District Office, Louisiana Economic Development’s Small and Emerging Business Development Program, AARP Louisiana, MetroMorphosis, and the City of Baton Rouge, East Baton Rouge Parish.

Scale Up! Louisiana is a statewide entrepreneurial education intensive hosted by the Urban League of Louisiana’s Center for Entrepreneurship & Innovation. The program provides early stage entrepreneurs with the education and resources that are critical to creating a scalable and profitable business. This is a transition program that guides existing, early stage small business owners towards becoming high growth, sustainable ventures. “Hancock Whitney is proud to extend this opportunity to residents of East Baton Rouge Parish as a direct investment into the future of the parish and the surrounding communities”, said Sunada Brookins, Senior Vice President, Director CRA & Fair Lending. In response to COVID-19-related safety measures, this modular program will be delivered completely online via 11, 2.5-hour web sessions. Participants will receive technical assistance and other support services throughout the program.

“The Urban League of Louisiana is excited to partner with Hancock Whitney and other local organizations to host Scale Up! Louisiana in East Baton Rouge Parish”, said Judy Reese Morse, President and CEO of the Urban League of Louisiana. “The impact of COVID-19 has emphasized the critical role of small businesses in our communities while also highlighting the need for small businesses to focus on scalability, profitability, and resilience. The Urban League of Louisiana is committed to providing the education, support services and resources to small businesses in East Baton Rouge Parish.”

Interested entrepreneurs must apply for the Scale Up! Louisiana program by completing an online application. Eligible entrepreneurs must meet the following criteria:

  • Have at least $40,000 in documented revenue from the previous tax year
  • Have been in business for at least 2 years
  • Have at least 2 employees (including the owner)
  • Must be certified as a Small and Emerging Business by LED
  • Must have a desire to scale or expand their business operations

Up to 30 business owners from East Baton Rouge Parish will be selected for the Fall 2020 cohort. Participants will be chosen based on 1.) the applicant’s ability to meet the eligibility requirements; 2.) the growth potential of the business; and 3.) the applicant’s desire to learn and grow in an interactive, online environment.

Classes begin on Tuesday, September 15, 2020, and will be held online via GoToMeeting. The application deadline is Friday, August 28, 2020 at 5:00p.m. CST and must be submitted online at

To learn more about the Scale Up! Louisiana Program, please visit To learn more about the Urban League of Louisiana’s Center for Entrepreneurship & Innovation, please visit