Training Program to Jump-Start New Businesses in Ste. Genevieve

CAPE GIRARDEAU, Mo.,

Aug. 10, 2010 – Operation Jump-Start (OJS), a highly successful training model for people wishing to start or expand a small business, will be offered in Ste. Genevieve, Mo., beginning Sept. 21.

The program, which is offered at no charge to a limited number of qualified participants, will be held from 6 to 9 p.m. on Tuesdays and Thursdays for six weeks at the Ste. Genevieve County Community Center. 

The six–week course uses the First Step FastTrac curriculum from the Kauffman Foundation and normally requires a fee of more than $600 per person. The course teaches participants essential business planning and preparation skills with hands-on, practical training and networking.  The course allows its graduates to compete for small start-up grants after submitting viable feasibility plans for a committee’s review.  Participation in the course, however, does not guarantee any start-up, grant funding will be awarded.    The Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship (CIE) at Southeast Missouri State University sponsors OJS along with funding from the U.S. Small Business Administration and the U.S. Department of Labor. The CIE has been recognized in rural America as the top deliverer of this entrepreneurial curriculum.  The Jump-Start model consistently produces businesses that are still in operation at an astounding rate of 92 percent after two years.  The entrepreneurial program has been instrumental in assisting about 600 individuals who have started or expanded more than 200 small businesses in Missouri, Tennessee and Illinois.

Those interested in jump-starting their business should contact the CIE to get a required application. Seating is limited.  Reasonable accommodations for persons with disabilities will be made, if requested at least two weeks in advance.  Please contact Susan Sterling at (573) 651-2286 or e-mail ssterling@semo.edu for all OJS information.       If you have already graduated from OJS or are a local business owner who would like to mentor future entrepreneurs, please contact the CIE.  Mentors are always needed for networking, guidance and project assistance.

The Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship (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.