HCCBIZCONNECT Directors present at NACCE in Portland, Oregon
Launching Entrepreneurship Centers- 7 Key Strategies – Years 1 & 2 was a hot topic presented by HCCBIZCONNECT Directors Sandra Louvier and Tiffany Champagne at the 2011 National Association of Community Colleges in Entrepreneurship (NACCE) annual conference in Portland. The audience was packed with community college representatives across the nation, all moving to launch entrepreneurial initiatives. Louvier attributed much of their success to Houston Community College’s strong leadership support and to insights gained from past NACCE conferences.
Launched in 2009, HCCBIZCONNECT Centers for Entrepreneurship began at HCC NW under the direction of Dr. Maya Durnovo and Dr. Zachary Hodges with the implementation of 7 key strategies: 1) “Starting a Business” workshops and boot camps, 2) college credit classes mirrored with continuing education, 3) Entrepreneurial Certificates, 4) Partnerships with local community organizations, 5) Website, 6) Business Advisory Board, and 7) a Business Plan Competition. These strategies drew over 1,000 participants eager to start a business or struggling to grow their business. The HCC entrepreneurship programs are playing an important role in helping entrepreneurs from concept development to opening and growing businesses.
The success of the HCC Center for Entrepreneurship played a role in winning the $25 million Goldman Sachs 10,000 Small Businesses program to HCC. Announced in February, 2011 by Mayor Parker, the first class of 53 small business owners graduated in early October. In the next four years, the goal is to graduate three to four classes per year.
By 2012, HCC SE College and HCC Central College will also offer entrepreneurship programs. Velva Tyson’s entrepreneurial program at HCC Central is being fueled by a vibrant and active Student Chamber of Commerce. Tiffany Champagne, Director at HCC SE, is planning the development of a Small Business Incubator in 2012.
Sandra Louvier will also be a featured panelist in an upcoming NACCE Webinar on November 9, 2011 called Success Stories from Portland: Growing Your Program with Email & Social Media Marketing.