Application period for Entrepreneurial Leadership Institute at The Center now open

The Center for Rural Development in Somerset is now accepting applications for its 2023 Entrepreneurial Leadership Institute, a one-week summer leadership program for high school students in its service area, which includes Russell, Adair, Casey, Clinton, Cumberland and Wayne counties, among others.

To apply for ELI, visit and fill out the online application form. The deadline to apply is March 31, 2023.

The program is open to current high school freshmen, sophomores, and juniors who live in The Center’s 45-county primary service area and are interested in developing their business and entrepreneurial skills.

ELI, held at The Center in Somerset, provides hands-on learning and real-life experiences to help high school students receive the skills they need to become future business leaders and entrepreneurs.

During the week, participants work as teams to come up with a business idea or product that they later pitch to a panel of judges in the Business Concept Challenge competition. Members of the winning team will earn a college scholarship offer from Eastern Kentucky University.

The program is developed, coordinated, and supervised by The Center in partnership with Kentucky Highlands Investment Corporation.

For more information about ELI or the application process, contact Amy Ellis at or call 606-677-6000.