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  • Writer's pictureMargo & Jelyse Dawson

Promises, Promises: Entrepreneurship Dreams

On January 15, 2021, an article appeared in the Triangle Business Journal entitled, "The Promise Of She turned Fortune 500 experience into a full-time fitness business in Raleigh by Connie Gentry featuring Jelyse Dawson, owner of Train Them Up for /Success LLC. "I was honored to be featured in what is described as a multimedia source for local business news, research, and event, shared Jelyse." The Triangle is a dynamic area including Raleigh, Durham, Chapel Hill, universities, businesses, and more. Q: Jelyse, what was your first experience with the Research Triangle Park, a 7,000 acres of high tech, bio-pharm, and other businesses ess? A: I was a student at Green Hope High School when I landed an internship with BD Technologies located in the Research Triangle Park. I worked in a lab testing blood. Q: At that time, were considering the health field? A: Yes, although I also had a passion for voice and symphonic music performance Q: How did working in such a controlled environment prepare you for your future? A: I was accepted at NC State University's W.I.S.E. program, Women in Science and Engineering. Q: How did you do? A: While I loved the camaraderie e of females in W.I.S.E., it was difficult for me to succeed based on my expectations. Chemistry was a tough ht subject for me and I needed more prep to compete with classmates who had more exposure. Q: Despite your expectations, you were awarded another internship through INROADS working for Phyzier Pharmaceuticals. That had to be just as hard. right? A: Actually, it was a great learning experience that came with a lot of responsibility. They provided a car for me to drive around the region selling and share information about various drugs. In addition to knowing about the product, you had to be a good communicator with physicians and office staff. Q: With a health education background, how did you graduate with a business degree. A: I went to a high-performance school, NC State University with a competitive major, pre-med. Yes, I had the science-based internship, qualified for entry, and even attended a lot of science camps but it wasn't enough. Perhaps, taking fewer classes would have helped but I made a radical change. I switched schools and changed my major to business. I come from a family of entrepreneurs so it was familiar. Q: How did earning a business degree help you thrive in your first official job? A: My undergraduate experiences combined from NC State University and Grambling State University prepared me to accept the challenge of working for a Fortune 500 Company, John Deere. I did everything from data analysis, client services, to diversity recruiting. My days were long and the travel schedule demanding. I got permission to hold weekly yoga and fitness classes during the lunch hour for employees to address stress and physical strain. We all benefited. I eventually left the company and taught restorative fitness to medical patients and eventually people of all ages. Q: So you thrived going the fitness route? A: It wasn't easy at first. I traveled around the state of North Carolina teaching fitness, earning multiple certifications to work. The pay was often low but I was passionate about helping people with physical and mental challenges. One of my target populations was employees. I needed more tools so I returned to NC State and earned an MBA at the Jenkins School of Business. Q: When the Triangle Business Journal interviewed you, it was when you were on the brink of landing a large corporate employee wellness account. How did that work out? A: I learned that promises render patience. The deal didn't come to fruition but I'm hopeful given the increase in virtual workers. Sitting in a chair for hours takes its toll not to mention balancing life demands during this pandemic. Q: It seems that your life journey returns to the health and wellness path. What is your advice to entrepreneurs? A: If you are passionate about your business or committed to its success, a delayed or broken promise cannot deter you. Picking up additional streams of income can help sustain you while strengthening your business.

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