Orlando, Fla. — Courtney Powell, president and CEO of AceApplications, an Orlando software development and IT consulting firm, had to make his own toys growing up in Jamaica because his family couldn’t afford to buy any. But he didn’t let that stop him from achieving his dreams of going to college and becoming a successful businessman.
Powell recently shared his story with students at Liberty Middle School’s Digital Festival commemorating Black History month.
Powell graduated from the University of Florida with a degree in electrical engineering and earned his MBA from Rollins College. He worked as a software engineer for Lockheed Martin and Director of Technology for CNL Financial Group before starting AceApplications.
Drawing from his life as a child growing up in Jamaica, Powell explained that it’s not about how you start, but how well you finish. He impressed upon the students to dream big, and to work hard to achieve their goals.
Powell serves on the City of Orlando’s Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Commission, and shared with the students how Dr. King didn’t let earning a “C” in speech class stop him from being one of the world’s greatest orators.
Liberty Spanish Teacher Alexandra Moa said Powell’s speech “really motivated our students, parents and staff. It helped them realize the value of college and career dreams and that obstacles can be overcome.”
Powell regularly gives of his time and experience to inspire children to “dream big”. He is a key sponsor of Collegiate Pathways programs such as Tech Sassy Girlz. In 2010, in partnership with the Orlando Magic and Kia Motors, Bright House Networks and Hunt Construction, AceApplications provided the technical expertise to put a state-of-the-art computer lab in Nap Ford Community School in Orlando.
AceApplications delivers software applications and projects for businesses and agencies. Local clients include Orlando International Airport, Central Florida Expressway Authority, Central Florida Research Park and OCPS schools.
The company is a client of the University of Central Florida Business Incubation Program in the Central Florida Research Park in east Orange County.
*Photo caption – CEO Courtney Powell of AceApplications in his office showing toy he made as a child growing up in Jamaica.
Carol Ann Dykes, Site Manager, UCF Business Incubation Program, 407-207-7426, firstname.lastname@example.org;
Larry Vershel or Beth Payan, Larry Vershel Communications Inc 407-644 4142 email@example.com
About the UCF Business Incubation Program
The University of Central Florida Business Incubation Program is a community resource that provides early-stage companies with the tools, training and infrastructure to become financially stable, high growth / impact enterprises. Since 1999, this award-winning program has helped hundreds of local startup companies reach their potential faster by providing vital business development resources.
With seven facilities throughout the region, the UCF Business Incubation Program is an economic development partnership between the University of Central Florida, the Corridor, Orange, Osceola, Seminole and Volusia Counties, and the cities of Apopka, Kissimmee, Orlando and Winter Springs. Participating companies sustain more than 3,600 local jobs and have had a total impact of $1.518 on regional sales and $2.488 on regional economic output. During the last fiscal year, the program has returned $7.95 for every $1.00 invested in the program.
For more information, visit www.incubator.ucf.edu.