Business Start-Up Training Offered in Sikeston

CAPE GIRARDEAU, Mo., March 14, 2011 — Do you want to launch a new business idea or give your current business a much-needed boost?  Have you ever wished you could be self-employed? If so, you can’t afford to miss two small business training programs to be offered soon in Sikeston, Mo., by the Douglas C. Greene Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship (CIE) at Southeast Missouri State University.

In conjunction with the Sikeston Area Chamber of Commerce, the CIE recently announced that two of their most popular training programs will be offered at no cost in Sikeston for individuals who are interested in starting new businesses in the area.  The first program, a one-night workshop called “How To Start A New Business,” provides an overview of the key elements of success in starting a small business; including legal and tax issues, resources for Missouri business owners, marketing and financial management.

“How To Start A New Business” will be offered on from 6 to 9 p.m. on Monday, April 11, at Southeast Missouri State University-Sikeston.  Dr. James Stapleton, executive director of the Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship, will be the instructor for the one-night workshop.  Those interested in attending should contact Susan Sterling at (573) 651-2286.

“We are pleased to be partnering with the Sikeston Area Chamber of Commerce to offer this training,” Stapleton said.  “How To Start a New Business will help individuals determine if small business ownership is right for them, and will pre-qualify them to participate in the six-week Operation JumpStart training program.  The introduction to terminology and business concepts will be extremely helpful as participants move forward with additional entrepreneurship training.”

“The Sikeston Area Chamber of Commerce is always looking for partnership opportunities such as this to assist our area entrepreneurs in gaining the skills they need to run a successful business in the Sikeston/Miner area, as well as throughout southeast Missouri,” said Missy Marshall, executive director of the Sikeston Area Chamber of Commerce.  

The Operation JumpStart training program will meet twice a week from 6 to 9 p.m. April 26 through June 2, also at the Sikeston Regional Campus.  This program allows graduates to compete for microenterprise grants of up to $5,000 after completion of course requirements. 

The entrepreneurial development program Operation JumpStart, developed by the CIE at Southeast Missouri State University, has been instrumental in assisting more than 500 individuals who have started or expanded more than 200 small businesses in southeast Missouri, southern Illinois and northern Tennessee. The Operation JumpStart training will use the “First Steps” curriculum from the Kauffman Foundation.  The CIE has been recognized in rural America as the number one deliverer of this training. 

If you would like to be considered for Operation Jump-Start, contact Susan Sterling at the CIE at (573) 651-2286 for information no later than April 1.  Seating is limited and an application is required.

Funding for these workshops is provided by the Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship and the Delta Regional Authority, an eight-state organization serving 252 counties and parishes in the Mississippi delta region. The CIE offers a wide array of academic and outreach programs and services, including: innovation development and research; entrepreneurship education, training and mentorship; and business incubation and development services.  The CIE supports Southeast Missouri State University’s strategic priority to advance the region’s economic appeal and strength by accelerating local and regional economic growth and development that improves the quality of lives, communities and businesses in southeast Missouri and the surrounding region.

For more information about the Douglas C. Greene Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship and the entrepreneurial support services it offers, call (573) 651-2929 or visit www.semo.edu/cie.