Small Business Training Offered in Marble Hill, Ironton


CAPE GIRARDEAU, Mo., Jan. 5, 2011 — Are you ready to be part of a select group of entrepreneurs who are realizing their dreams of small business ownership?  Have you ever wished you could be self-employed?  Do you want to Jump-Start a new business idea or give your current business a much-needed boost?  If so, you can’t afford to miss two small business training programs to be offered locally by the Douglas C. Greene Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship (CIE) at Southeast Missouri State University.

The CIE recently announced that two of their most popular training programs will be offered at no cost in Marble Hill and Ironton 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 Tuesday, Feb. 15, at the Thousand Oaks Winery in Marble Hill and again on Tuesday, Feb. 22, at the Public Health Department on Highway M in Ironton.  Russell Humphrey, Small Business and Technology Development Center director, will be the instructor for the one-night workshops. 

“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 Jump-Start courses coming in March to both Marble Hill and Ironton,” explained Gina Harper, training coordinator for the CIE. “It’s extremely important for anyone wishing to attend the Operation Jump-Start course to also attend the one-night session first.  The introduction to terminology and business concepts will be extremely helpful as participants move forward with additional entrepreneurship training.”

Those interested in attending should contact Glenna Ervin at (573) 651-2929.

The second program offered in both locations is called Operation Jump-Start.  The six-week course, which has already assisted in the creation or expansion of over 200 small businesses in Missouri, Tennessee and Illinois,  teaches participants essential small business planning and preparation skills with practical applications.  In Marble Hill, the class will start on

March 1 and will be held at the Thousand Oaks Winery.  In Ironton, class will start on March 15 and take place at the Public Health Department conference room.  Operation Jump-Start is delivered on Tuesday and Thursday evenings from 6–9 p.m.

The Operation Jump-Start course allows graduates to compete for micro-enterprise grants (up to $5,000) after completion of course requirements.  East Missouri Action Agency of Park Hills, Mo., is partnering with the CIE to offer the seed capital for this entrepreneurial project.

Janey Radford, EMAA Community Resource Development Specialist, said, “I think that the real path to economic recovery for our communities begins with taking action. It is exciting to see these  rural communities searching for ways to promote and support their businesses and to recognize that encouraging entrepreneurial growth falls into that category.” 

If you would like to be considered for Operation Jump-Start, contact your local EMAA office no later than Feb. 10 or contact Susan Sterling at the CIE at (573) 651-2286 for information and an application.

Funding for Operation Jump-Start is provided by the CIE, the Delta Regional Authority and through funding received by the EMAA from a community service block grant. Iron County  supporting partners include the Iron County Chamber of Commerce, the Taum Sauk Fund and the Public Health Department. Bollinger County supporting partners are the Bollinger County Chamber of Commerce, the Bollinger County Library and the owners of the Thousand Oaks Winery, Bob and Teresa Eachus.

The CIE 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 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