UC student group Neo Cincy works to create equity in business practices | News

Created in 2020 with the intention to “empower minority-owned small businesses by leveraging the informative power of data,” Neo Cincy creates a unique opportunity for University of Cincinnati students to gain hands-on experience with data analysis, while also helping to close the equity gap minority-owned businesses often face.

At the University of Cincinnati (UC), the knowledge and skills students learn don’t just stop when they walk out the classroom door. The need to apply these learned skills to the world around them to become a powerful catalyst for students to create meaningful work for campus, the greater Cincinnati community and in some cases, even nationwide.

That’s what Neo Cincy strives to do. Created in 2020 with the intention to “empower minority-owned small businesses by leveraging the informative power of data,” Neo Cincy creates a unique opportunity for UC students to gain hands-on experience with data analysis, while also helping to close the equity gap The minority-owned businesses often face.

Despite being estimated that 32% of the US population is made up of minority groups, these groups only account for 18% of business ownership. Neo Cincy is setting out to help uplift these businesses by offering unique, tailored, data analysis to help these businesses continue to grow and thrive.

Founded by fourth year economics student Daniel Posmik, Neo Cincy was born out of Posmik’s desire to do more for his community. His original focus in the creation of Neo Cincy was to center on education equality for the minority-owned businesses.

“I’m actually an international student and coming to the US and seeing what the reality is here was insane and I wanted to do something about it,” said Posmik. “One of the biggest realizations as I went through my college career is that there’s so many dimensions of marginalization and the inequality that I wasn’t aware of for me as a white male, recognizing an item so privileged in that aspect, and I want to do some things with my privilege and education.”

Posmik knew he had a skill that was needed by these businesses; A unique understanding of how numbers can be translated to improve business practices. Posmik wasn’t the only UC student who had these capabilities. After assembling a small team of hardworking students, Neo Cincy was born.

The data that Neo Cincy analyzes can be broken into three categories: Business intelligence, analytics, and systems and E-commerce. Business intelligence is market research, explained Posmik.

“A lot of small businesses don’t have the data and information to make good decisions, like for example, we work with a lot of small business owners in the beauty industry,” Posmik said. “They don’t know if they want to launch new products; Whether the competition has a product, so we jumped in, and read all the data to help them make a better decision.”

Slightly more advanced in analytics, which involves research into what areas of a business can be cut to optimize production value and efficiency. Things such as supply chain analytics and financial analytics come into play here. Rounding out Neo Cincy’s offerings is systems and E-commerce. Which Posmik notes has become very popular with businesses.

“[It] Focuses the organization which deals all around things like website development, but then also how do you develop databases? How do you make a website talk to your newsletter? How do you automate things so this entire third practice area is all centered around automation?” Posmic said.

Simply put time is money for these businesses, optimizing practices is vital.

Through their relentless efforts, Neo Cincy has started to become a staple in the Cincinnati business community. When they first got their start, organizations such as Mortar Cincinnati and Voice of Your Customer, worked closely with Neo Cincy to connect them with local businesses in the community that required their services. Now the group is fortunate enough to have work come to them.

This is labor intensive volunteer work that students are doing, Posmik notes, and there have been long nights and sometimes the five hours students are asked to put in for the projects simply aren’t enough. As Neo Cincy continues to grow, they hope to grow the amount of data analysts they have on the team.

“It’s hard to have students commit to these times, because everyone does this on a volunteer basis for now,” Posmik said. “Everyone’s lives get stressed and finals come up and we try to work around them as much as possible. But it’s been really, really hard to provide amazing work to our clients, while also respecting our students.”

This hard work has tangible outcomes that make the stress worth it to those who do it. There is the personal growth of understanding their work goes towards a greater cause than just self-fulfilling internships or jobs. In the same vein, there are invaluable professional opportunities for students to fine tune these skills for when they graduate.

Posmik ultimately hopes Neo can expand beyond Cincinnati.

“The growing vision for [Neo] is to pay our students scholarship money, so as to make funding accessible to our students, and to expand that meal to different campuses across the United States,” said Posmik.

As for UC students interested in getting involved with Neo Cincy, Posmik advises they attend the group’s events. Information can be found on Neo Cincy’s Linkedin and Instagram. Twice a year the group opens applications for students to apply to be actual data analysts on the team. Information for when these openings occur can be found on their social media.


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