Small Business Development Training Coming to Cape Girardeau

by News Bureau on Thursday, Jan. 26, 2012

CAPE GIRARDEAU, Mo., Jan. 26, 2012 — Are you ready to be part of an elite group of entrepreneurs who are realizing their dreams of small business ownership? Do you want to “jumpstart” an idea or give your current business that needed boost? If so, you can’t afford to miss the no-charge training opportunity that will be offered soon in Cape Girardeau, courtesy of the Douglas C. Greene Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship (CIE) at Southeast Missouri State University.

The six week course, called Operation JumpStart (OJS), is a nationally-recognized, highly- successful training model designed for individuals who are considering starting or expanding a small business. The OJS program helps participants build essential business planning and preparation skills like product pricing, legal structure, competition, marketing and cash flow management with the goal of developing a feasibility plan to start or expand a business. In addition, Operation JumpStart graduates will learn about access to start-up capital in the form of competitive grants and microloans and will benefit from one-on-one business counseling with professional business development consultants from the Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship.

Operation JumpStart will be offered starting Feb. 21 and will be held on Tuesday and Thursday nights from 6–9 p.m. Operation JumpStart has been instrumental in assisting more than 650 individuals who have started or expanded more than 250 small businesses in southeast Missouri and elsewhere.

Sherry Jennings, a 2011 graduate of Operation JumpStart said, “I have officially realized my entrepreneurial dream as of January 2nd when I opened my store, Mississippi Mutts, which is a bakery, bath and boutique for dogs.”

Jennings also said her shop, located at 1231 Broadway in Cape Girardeau, will soon add dog grooming to its full line of pet services. “We are doing better at three weeks than I would have ever imagined,” she said.

The OJS course, to be offered at no cost, is made possible in part through funding  from the U.S. Small Business Administration. Programs are extended to the public on a non-discriminatory basis. Reasonable accommodations for persons with disabilities will be made if requested at least two weeks in advance by contacting Glenna Ervin at gervin@semo.edu or (573) 651-2929.

If you can attend all sessions and are ready to JumpStart your business, please contact the Douglas C. Greene Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship by Feb. 15 for class location details and an application. An application is required and seating is limited. Visit www.semo.edu/cie/training or contact the CIE at cie@semo.edu.

The Douglas C. Greene Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship at Southeast Missouri State University is one of the most comprehensive entrepreneurship-focused university centers in the Midwest, offering 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 center supports Southeast Missouri State University’s strategic priority to accelerate economic growth and development that improves the quality of lives, communities and businesses in southeast Missouri and the southeast region.

Additional Operation JumpStart programs this spring will be held in Perryville, Park Hills, Sikeston, Charleston and Piedmont, Mo. Those classes are forming now, so call to register early. The first three participants to register and attend in each location will receive a free technology device. For more information about the CIE and the entrepreneurial support services it offers, contact (573) 651-2929 or visit www.semo.edu/cie.