Milagros Blanken-Rodriguez Navarro was born and raised on Curaçao. As a daughter of a Latin-American entrepreneur who experienced different highs and lows of entrepreneurship on Curaçao, Milagros was always intrigued about what motivates entrepreneurs to start and continue, and what their critical success factors are. She has a Bachelors degree in Business Administration (2006) from the University of Curaçao (UoC) and a Masters degree in International Economics and Business (2010) from the School of Economics at the University of Utrecht, The Netherlands. Besides her formal education she became a certified Business Analyst for SeDECK in 2003 and voluntarily helped different new and existing entrepreneurs on Curaçao to create their business plan till mid-2005. From 2011 till 2014 Milagros she also lectured the course International Economics at UoC with the aim to discuss and equip future young professional or entrepreneurs about key economic matters. In addition, she has assisted the university’s Business Incubator Program as business plan evaluator. Milagros started her professional career in 2010– first as a Business Analyst and afterwards as Account Manager Commercial Credit – at Maduro & Curiel’s Bank N.V. (Curaçao and Bonaire). In December 2017 she joined the team of Qredits Microfinanciering Nederland on Bonaire as Senior Business Advisor. Her main task, previously at MCB and now at Qredits, is to assist entrepreneurs in getting financing for their start-up or growth opportunities. The economic and business development on Curaçao and Bonaire inspired her to start creating development opportunities for business and job creation on the Dutch Caribbean islands, for ‘where is there is a will, there is a way’. The training ‘Entr-Act’ (Entrepreneurship in Action) is her first attempt to motivate entrepreneurs to get into action despite of challenges and the unknown. About her involvement in JCI: Milagros joined JCI IOBA Curaçao in December 2010. She held 3 Local and 3 National (JCI Dutch Caribbean) positions so far, and became a certified JCI Trainer in 2012. She also attended 6 JCI Conference of the Americas,2 JCI World Congress, 3 JCI Global Partnership Summit and 3 JCI academies.
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