CATALYST V22N1 - Entrepreneurship and Small-Business Development Programs in the Community College

Volume XXII, Number 1
Winter 1992

Diane Hirshberg
User Services Coordinator

Economic development is a vital concern of every community across the nation. An important component of economic growth is the development of small businesses and entrepreneurial projects. Small businesses create jobs at a faster rate than large corporations, and thus contribute to the economic health of regions. A number of community colleges have instituted programs to support entrepreneurial ventures and small business development. Some of these programs are described in the following citations and abstracts, which represent a selection of ERIC documents on entrepreneurial education and small business development programs at the community college level.

The full text of ERIC documents can be read on microfiche at over 700 libraries nationwide, or may be ordered from the ERIC Document Reproduction Service (EDRS) in Springfield, Virginia (1-800-443-ERIC). Please note that this is a new number for the service. For an EDRS order form, list of libraries in your area that house ERIC microfiche collections, or for more information about our services, please contact the ERIC Clearinghouse for Junior Colleges, 8118 Math-Sciences Building, UCLA, Los Angeles, CA 90024 (213-825-3931).

Clayton, G. (1990, May). Teaching Entrepreneurship at the College Level. Paper presented at the Annual Conference of the Association of Canadian Community Colleges, Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island. 9 pp. (ERIC Document Reproduction Service No. 319 446)

This paper underscores the need for entrepreneurship education in Canada's community colleges and presents a description of Confederation College's (CC's) entrepreneurial curriculum. A history of the growth of entrepreneurial businesses in Canada is presented followed by a discussion of the need for entrepreneurial education at the community college level. This section discusses entrepreneurship as a very practical applied subject that can be taught inside or outside of a college business division to provide people with the skills necessary to start their own business. The objectives of teaching entrepreneurial education are presented next, indicating that general interest courses should focus on increasing awareness about entrepreneurship possibilities and the rewards and risks involved, while courses designed for those interested in pursuing entrepreneurial projects should focus on teaching the technical skills needed for a successful start-up or business survival. A section on curriculum content is presented next, using CC's 19-course program as a model. This program includes courses on the characteristics, motivation, and behavior of entrepreneurs; creative thinking, idea generation, and problem solving; market analysis, and consumer and competition surveys; advertising approaches; and the pressures faced by entrepreneurs. The final two sections deal with teaching methods and the importance of learning by doing.

Jones, E. B. (1989). A Report on the Minority Business Enterprise Project, 1983-1989. Washington, DC: American Association of Community and Junior Colleges. 34 pp. (ERIC Document Reproduction Service No. ED 312 005)

An overview is provided of the activities and accomplishments of the Minority Business Enterprise Project (MBEP) between 1983 and 1989. The project's objectives are to provide education, training, and assistance to minority entrepreneurs, business owners, and managers through the nation's two-year colleges. Section 1 underscores the importance of minority business development and identifies obstacles to minority business success. Section 2 explains the origins of the MBEP and describes the project's major components (i.e., development of partnerships between private and public sectors, entrepreneurship education, business management training, technical assistance, clearinghouse services, and workshops and seminars on minority business development). In addition, this section identifies the organizations and partners in the MBEP, including the American Association of Community and Junior Colleges, participating community and junior colleges, the Minority Business Development Agency, minority business development centers, the National Minority Supplier Development Council, Opportunities Industrialization Centers of America, Inc., Jobs for Progress, Inc., and participating high schools. Section 3 offers an overview of local minority business enterprise program, highlights the achievements of 45 community colleges, and discusses the purpose and accomplishments of regional partnership forums. Section 4 projects future directions for the project. Appendixes provide a statistical summary of MBEP activities and a resource list of government agencies, private organizations, publishers, and instructional resources.

Jones, E. B. (1989). An Introductory Guide to Entrepreneurship for American Indians. Washington, DC: American Association of Community and Junior Colleges. 45 pp. (ERIC Document Reproduction Service No. ED 311 995)

Although it was prepared to assist American Indians in initiating entrepreneurial activities, this booklet offers practical guidance to all persons interested in starting and operating a business. Section I defines the term "entrepreneurship," and provides a self-evaluation checklist focusing on the qualities needed by entrepreneurs. Section II briefly discusses four forms of ownership (i.e., sole proprietorships, partnerships, corporations, and franchises) and presents a set of questions to help determine the best site for a business. In section III, financial considerations are reviewed, including ways of financing a business with personal savings or loans, records management, personnel records, and the use of personal computers. Section IV outlines key factors in market planning; identifies information sources; and discusses issues such as pricing, promotion, serving, and exporting. Section V lists the key elements of a business plan, and offers a sample plan for Native American Seafood, Inc. Finally, section VI offers brief sketches of several successful Native American enterprises. A list of publications and organizations that can serve as resources is attached.

Finger Lakes Regional Education Center for Economic Development. (1987). Entrepreneurship Models. Albany, New York State Education Department. 276 pp. (ERIC Document Reproduction Service No. ED 288 005)

This guide describes seven model programs that were developed by the Finger Lakes Regional Center for Economic Development (New York) to meet the training needs of female and minority entrepreneurs to help their businesses survive and grow and to assist disabled and dislocated workers and youth in beginning small businesses. The first three models presented are geared toward helping female urban, suburban, and rural entrepreneurs (developed by Monroe Community College, the Wayne/Finger Lakes Board of Cooperative Educational Services, and Genessee Community College, respectively). A minority entrepreneurship model (developed by the Rochester City School District), entrepreneurship for the disabled model (developed by Monroe Community College), dislocated worker entrepreneurship model (developed by the Rochester Institute of Technology), and youth entrepreneurship model (developed by the Finger Lakes Regional Education Center for Economic Development) are also included in the guide. Each of these models includes an introduction; steps to follow in setting up a program for the target audience; a summary of additional critical points; and sample press releases, memos, and questionnaires.

Lamb, M. (Ed.) et al. (1987). Self-Employment Training Programs: Case Studies. Springfield: Illinois State Department of Commerce and Community Affairs. 31 pp. (ERIC Document Reproduction Service No. ED 283 950)

This self-employment training program case study booklet has been developed for general use in exploring the feasibility of this kind of development tool. The case studies describe a number of comprehensive, self-employment training and assistance programs, from the local to the national level. Chapter II includes information on the training plan, curriculum, recruitment and screening processes, financing mechanisms, and successful business start-ups of six programs. Chapter III outlines the small business curricula of 10 Illinois community colleges. Chapter IV describes five potential sources of funding for an Illinois program; the training, counseling, or administrative aspects that may be funded with these sources; eligible individuals to receive the training; and points of contact in securing funding for a training program through these sources. Chapter V focuses on programs in other states. Eight program descriptions include information on the structure of training programs, the technical and follow-up assistance provided, and each program's successful business start-ups. Chapter VI describes public and private, national and international programs: the unemployment assistance systems of England and France, which have integrated self-employment; an attempt to establish a similar program in the United States; and a Hawaii program.

Jellison, H. M. (Ed). (1983). Small Business Training Models for Community Growth. Washington, DC: American Association of Community and Junior Colleges. 66 pp. Available from American Association of Community and Junior Colleges, One Dupont Circle, NW, Washington, DC 20036 ($10). (ERIC Document Reproduction Service No. ED 229 062)

Nine successful community college programs for small business management training are described in this report in terms of their college and economic context, purpose, offerings, delivery modes, operating and marketing strategies, community outreach, support services, faculty and staff, evaluation, and future directions. The model programs are offered by (1) Albuquerque Technical-Vocational Institute, which provides individual assistance to businesses, evening and weekend workshops, day and evening courses, and a certificate program; (2) Cuyahoga Community College, which offers a full-service associate degree as well as short, noncredit workshops; (3) Daytona Beach Community College's Center for Small Business, which provides workshops, seminars, counseling, and resources; (4) El Paso Community College's Center for Educational Services for Small Business Development, which offers a comprehensive system of educational and support systems utilizing community and college resources; (5) the Rural Business Institute of Genessee Community College, which provides on- site consultation services; (6) Lane Community College's Business Assistance Center, which stresses practical skills training, services to small rural businesses, and farm business management; (7) Montgomery College, which offers courses for the public and local employers, and produces business conferences; (8) Saddleback Community College, which features an entrepreneurship program and a workshop series on starting a business; and (9) Stark Technical College's Thursday College for Small Business Owners, which stresses problem-solving skills.

Montgomery, J., Morgan, J., & Myers, J. (1989). An Introduction to Developing an Urban Business Incubator. Washington, DC: American Association of Community and Junior Colleges. 40 pp. (ERIC Document Reproduction Service No. ED 312 001)

Designed to provide a brief overview of the considerations involved in establishing a small business incubator, this guide presents information on incubator classification, funding methods, incubator operation techniques, and two-year college involvement in the formation of a working business incubator. Part 1 describes a small business incubator as a facility that provides an opportunity for new and existing small businesses to reduce some of the risk involved in operating through shared services; reasonable rent; access to administrative support services; and access to management, financial, and technical assistance. The differences between public/not-for-profit, private, academic-related, and public/private incubators are noted. Part 2 describes the phases in the creation and development process, including information on the establishment of a coordinating team and the conduct of a feasibility study. In part 3, financial considerations are reviewed, and a list of possible funding sources is provided. Part 4 lists the community/junior colleges currently associated with business incubators, and the North Carolina community colleges in the process of developing centers. This section also notes the services that community colleges can provide to developing businesses. In part 5, implementation concerns are discussed, including site acquisition, fund raising, "incubators without walls," tenant graduation, data collection needs, marketing, and the roles of the incubator manager, advisory committee, and anchor tenants. Appendixes contain a list of services incubators should provide, a sample application form for incubator tenants, a bibliography of 67 selected resources, and suggested materials for an incubator library.

Collingwood, J., Cutlip, M., & Lee, R. (1989, March). Training Work Forces During Changing Times. Paper presented at the 26th National Conference of the American Technical Education Association. Fort Worth, TX. 85 pp. (ERIC Document Reproduction Service No. ED 307 929)

In an effort to revitalize the state's economy through the diversification of industrial and service-oriented businesses, the Iowa General Assembly funds community college outreach programs to business and industry. At Des Moines Area Community College (DMACC), industry outreach is administered by the Economic Development Group (EDG), an entrepreneurial center that employs 45 training consultants and support staff who travel throughout the service district to help businesses remain competitive. The EDG offers short- and long-term intensive training, helps firms reduce start- up time, and provides affordable services. The program is designed to develop jobs, train the work force, and accelerate economic growth in the businesses and in the community. EDG components include two new business incubators, a marketing center for the products and services of Iowa businesses, a procurement center to assist small businesses in obtaining federal contracts, and continuing education and contract training divisions. The EDG has resulted in the formation of flexible training partnerships between DMACC and area businesses, such as Firestone Tire and Rubber Company. A report on the EDG, with special focus on DMACC's partnership with the Firestone tire plant, is attached. Constituting the bulk of this document, the report includes sections on the history of DMACC's partnerships with business, information on current DMACC/labor-management partnerships, an outline of EDG components, a discussion of the impact of plant closures, and guidelines for developing EDG programs.

Jellison, H. M. (Ed.) (1983). Small Business Training: A Guide for Program Building. Washington, DC: American Association of Community and Junior Colleges. 68 pp. Available from American Association of Community and Junior Colleges, One Dupont Circle, NW, Washington, DC 20036. ($10) (ERIC Document Reproduction Service No. ED 229 072)

This guide explains how to organize and deliver quality small business training in a cost-effective manner, and offers information for staff orientations at institutions launching new small business training programs, for newly assigned Small Business Administration (SBA) field personnel, and for annual program reviews and revisions. Section 1 describes the development and functions of the National Small Business Training Network (NSBTN), provides a rationale and outline for program planning, and offers a checklist for marketing NSBTN in local communities. Steps for starting a small business training program (i.e., creating a community-based advisory committee, marketing and financing the program, making timetables and developing strategies, and getting SBA co-sponsorship) are discussed in section 2, along with tips for developing small business management training (SBMT) programs and workshops. Using various college programs as models, section 3 describes the types of programs offered by two-year institutions, such as credit programs, noncredit certificate programs, free- standing continuing education programs, alternative delivery systems, and special projects. Section 4 discusses new directions for small business training with respect to standardized training, contract education, and microcomputer instruction. Finally, section 5 considers opportunities for collaboration between universities and two-year colleges, and presents an outreach model for community colleges.

The ERIC Clearinghouse for Junior Colleges invites the contribution of written materials dealing with any aspect of community/junior college education. Submissions of curriculum and "how-to" guides and manuals, research and descriptive reports, conference papers, and other unpublished works are encouraged. Please send two copies of each manuscript that you would like to have reviewed for inclusion in the ERIC database to the Acquisitions Coordinator, ERIC Clearinghouse for Junior Colleges, 8118 Math-Sciences Building, UCLA, Los Angeles, CA 90024.

by Sarah Ryan