A note from our Executive Director, Ben MacMinn.
As an Entrepreneur Support Organization, the question we get asked daily is, “How do I start a business?” We have helped entrepreneurs address this question through our programming, mentoring, and networking since our start in 2019. StartUP Columbus is excited to announce a new program offering. We have partnered with Make Startups to offer the Chattahoochee Valley region a new level of skills training, intensive mentorship, and accredited certification to aspiring entrepreneurs. This partnership, with five communities across Georgia, has become known as the MESH network
How does it work?
Entrepreneurship is one of the biggest challenges many will face but also one of the most rewarding. Your success will depend on your adaptability, work ethic, and a little luck. Our goal is to support you through this journey with our experience, connections, and community.
The Make StartUPs Certificate of Entrepreneurship includes an in-depth 12-week course that teaches entrepreneurs the ins and outs of owning and growing a business. The class meets once a week for three hours. After the curriculum component of the program concludes, participants can expect six months of weekly mentoring to earn the complete certificate. Our curriculum covers the following:
· Planning–Creation of a business plan, including customer discovery, market analysis, and branding.
· Technology–Incorporating technology for operational optimization.
· Financing–Establishing in-roads for financing with a focus on accounting and bookkeeping.
· Law–Considering your legal structure, licensing, and contracts.
What do you get out of it?
We believe the value of this program is immeasurable. As previously mentioned, you will receive 12-weeks of professional training in entrepreneurship followed by six months of mentorship. All of the materials needed for the program are included in the cost of the program. On the first day of the program, all you need to bring is your innovative ideas!
Additionally, you will receive a two-year subscription to QuickBooks to monitor and track your growth (don’t worry, we cover the cost of using QuickBooks during the program). All of the participants will become a member of the StartUP Columbus Incubator at the Entrepreneurship Level, giving you access to office workspace, business development programs, and a network of like-minded entrepreneurs with whom you can collaborate.
Finally, as a part of the MESH network, over 20 lenders and venture capitalists in Georgia have committed to supporting entrepreneurs who graduate from the Certificate of Entrepreneurship Program.
Now for the big question–What does it cost?
Program fees for our Certificate Program are $5,900. BUT–What makes this program so unique is that 100% tuition is available and provided by the Lower Chattahoochee Workforce Development Board for qualified applicants. For those who do not qualify, other scholarship opportunities and flexible payment plans are available.
Whether you’re an owner of an existing business looking to grow or you have an idea and are looking to start, we encourage you to apply. You will need a well-articulated description of the product or service you offer (or plan on offering) and a description of your consumer, client, or target audience. We’re looking for entrepreneurs who represent a diverse range of sectors and backgrounds to establish a cohort that incorporates both established businesses and startup concepts. We screen our applicants, and space is limited.
To learn more about this program and how you can get involved, check out all the details on our website: www.startupcolga.com/mesh.