The Network for Teaching Entrepreneurship has recognized with national awards for two participants in a high school entrepreneurship education program based at California State University, Fresno’s Lyles Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship.

Roosevelt High School business teacher Linda Jean Voth and her student, Cassandra Padilla, were selected by the network as its Teacher and Young Entrepreneur of the Year. They will receive their awards April 13 in New York.

Cassandra, a 17-year-old senior at Roosevelt, founded Dulce Sweets in 2009. Her company creates truffles and other specialty chocolates commercially.

Voth, her business teacher at Roosevelt, has been involved with the entrepreneurship teaching program through the Lyles Center since 2007.

“The Lyles Center is committed to this program because it works,” said Genelle Taylor, the center’s associate director of the center. “Students learn the importance of entrepreneurship and businesses start out of the program, much like Cassandra’s. Linda Jean Voth is an inspiration to her students and is able to help them recognize their worth.”

Fresno Unified’s trustees invited Padilla and Voth’s to their Wednesday, Feb. 24 meeting to be acknowledged for their achievement.

The Network for Teaching Entrepreneurship licenses the Lyles Center to offer teachers training and curriculum in entrepreneurship for high schools throughout the San Joaquin Valley.

The Lyles Center is a hub encouraging innovation and helping ideas become businesses. It also has numerous programs aimed to promote invention and entrepreneurial spirit from elementary school into adulthood.

For more information contact Taylor at 559.294.2045 or

(Copy by University Communications intern Amanda Fine.)