Alumna discusses entrepreneurship, passion

Krystal Ortiz, News Editor

The Hynes Institute of Entrepreneurship & Innovation hosted an eTalk featuring graduate student Jullian Cea on Sept. 24.

Hynes hosts eTalks, where a speaker or panel considered to be entrepreneurs in their field speak to students about their successes, failures and how entrepreneurship fits into their journey and how it can fit into any field.

Cea started her first semester in college going into nursing as a pre-med student at Pace University. She then changed her major to psychology and continued her education at The College of New Rochelle until the university closed. She transferred to Iona to finish her master’s in psychology with a concentration in mental health counseling. Cea founded a grief counseling program, Compassionate Journey, after seeing a lack of support for individuals who are suffering the loss of a loved one in her community.

Her drive to give support to individuals in mourning comes from her own experience of losing a sibling. She claimed that the first time she ever felt understood since their sudden death was when she attended a grief counseling program.

“It was my 14th birthday actually, that was the night of my first group,” Cea explained. “So I went, and honestly that was the first time that I ever felt like I was understood since the day that my brother passed away. I sat around that table, and I was with a group of kids who had gone through something so similar to me and they weren’t just, you know, like kids from my school who didn’t understand. It was kids my age, going to school and doing all the things that 13 and 14-year-olds should be doing. But they also had this big thing on their shoulders: that they lost somebody traumatically at a very young age.”

During her sophomore year of college, Cea began to volunteer at the same grief counseling program she had attended at 14. After volunteering a couple of years with them, she wanted to give back in a different way.

“I wanted to do something more,” Cea said. “I wanted to contribute to the community. I wanted to get more experience in the field for them.”

Cea also spoke about the most important factor in becoming an entrepreneur in one’s field.

“Passion is something that I found is probably the most important and is the driving force of being an entrepreneur,” Cea said. “Because passion is the thing that just keeps you going. You know, when it’s 3 a.m. and you guys are up probably studying for a test or doing homework last minute, it’s really the passion that keeps you going. When people are telling you, ‘all your ideas bad, you’re never gonna make it,’ it’s really your passion that will tell you to tune all that out and make you say ‘I have this goal and I’m going to do it.’”

Check out the Hynes Institute of Entrepreneurship & Innovation on Facebook to find information about further meetings.