Frequently Asked Questions
Where Do We Begin?
Where Do We Begin?
Q: Where do we start?A: It all depends on
two main questions:
"Where are you right now?” and "Where do you want to go?”
If you do not have any
entrepreneurship offerings at all and want to create two certificate programs,
a two-year degree and full-featured, and a one-stop entrepreneurship center with
multi-use incubator — then you’ve got some work cut out for you. Regardless of
your goal or the distance you are from that vision, it can be done. You just
need to use NACCE to help you make the most of your time and efforts.
Our member colleges
save time, money, and are most effective in their efforts because we share our
best practices, ideas, and feedback. The Basic Steps Are:
A) Explore your
options through NACCE resources. Our quarterly
journals, NACCE conferences
and our webinars are great places to start.
B) Examine your
college culture and local economy to determine what kind of offerings make
sense for your school and community.
C) Identify and gather
your local allies (both on and off campus) and use them to help you create and
then implement your plan.
QuickTip:To speed up the process of creating a plan for entrepreneurship
education and training in your community check out the Quick Start
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Q: How do we begin to utilize NACCE resources?
A:The very first thing to do is to understand what we have and how to find it.
At various times you’ll likely go through three basic stages
Stage 1: Gathering
If you are very early in the planning phase you will probably want to peruse our
resources to gather ideas of what is possible by hearing how other colleges have
put their programs together.
Look for this symbol to recognize NACCE resources and this symbol to access
Quarterly Journal: Community College Entrepreneurship: (Members
Archive: With PowerPoint presentations from the last 10 years
Curriculum Examples:(Members Only)
Stage 2: Searching
Once you get an idea of where you are headed, you can search the NACCE site for related content. Here are some applicable keywords:
To search the entire
NACCE site, look for the "Community Search” button in the upper right hand side of each page. Some items are open to the public, and some are
reserved for members only.
- PowerPoint presentations
Make sure to log in so you can can have access to
all the results from the search.
Stage 3: Reaching Out
At some point you will find that the NACCE site does not appear to have what
you are looking for. Do not worry, there is another resource to draw from – your
If you have not
already done so go here and sign up for First-Word, the NACCE members-only
you to post questions for the network to respond to or offer feedback. It is a
great way to get answers, ideas and help in solving challenges
related to your entrepreneurship plans, projects, and programs.
Each reply by a
member will appear as a separate email unless you opt for just one daily email
by checking the "Digest” option when you sign up.
The NACCE main office can give you overviews and trends, but your fellow educators can
be more specific and may have more relevant examples and suggestions.
Q: What is a
A: List-serv is a group email list. When creating a List-Serv email, compose a subject line and message. When sent to the list-serv email address (given once you sign up) the email will be
automatically stamped with "[NACCE]” at the beginning of the subject line.
Q: How do I change my
A: Below are step by step instructions:
If you have not done so already, please also take some time to fill out your
profile and upload a picture. You can always add more to it or change things
- Go to NACCE
homepage and select "Sign In”
- Under "My Profile” Select "Manage Profile”
- Under the top section marked "Information & Settings” select the
"Edit Bio” option
- You can then select "(change)” in the password field to select and submit
a new password. You may need to first re-enter the old password.
Sidenote: Q: I’ve lost my password or I cannot remember my username.
A: Your username will be your email address (unless you have changed it.)
To get a reset-password link emailed to you just request it here.
Q: How do I
search the NACCE website?
A: Make sure you are logged into
the NACCE site so you will be able to access items in the restricted
member area. Look for the
"Community Search” button in the upper right hand side of the page. Log in to your user account, and type in the topic key words you are interested in.
Q: What if I
cannot find what I’m looking for?
A: If you cannot find
what you are looking for contact the NACCE main office, or sign up for First Word, our
community’s members-only List-Serv.
you to post questions for the network to respond to or offer feedback.
It is also where we post messages about funding, conference and publicity opportunities.
When posting a
question, make sure the subject line is brief but descriptive. Subject lines
that are too vague or hyperbolic might not get good results.
Here are some Examples:
These lines are too vague or hyperbolic and will probably get ignored.
Subject: I want your
Subject: Tons of money!
These lines are
simple but direct requests that are more likely to get opened and acted upon.
educators about entrepreneurship?
Subject: Examples of entrepreneurship center funding proposals
Q: Who can I
add to my membership?
organization’s membership allows for up to 10 members, the key member plus 9
more members (also called Sub-Accounts). In addition, the president or
chancellor can also be on the membership as a bonus seat, which does not count
against the 10 members.
The key member can
assign member seats to faculty, staff and even active partners in your
entrepreneurship program. Besides faculty and staff members directly involved
with entrepreneurship, you can also include contacts at business support organizations,
university partners, advisory board members, individuals who work for the college district, or anyone involved with
your entrepreneurship efforts.
If the organizational
member is a college district then they can add multiple members from one of
their colleges. They cannot however assign member seats to multiple colleges.
There are also individual
memberships available to those that qualify. However individual memberships are
not eligible to compete for funding opportunities such as the Coleman
Elevator Grants or Sam's Club
Shared Vision for Small Business Competition
Each seat enables
that member to access all the NACCE knowledge and communication resources.
Here’s a list of the member benefits.
Q: How do I add someone to our membership?
A: When you have
identified who you would like to add to your membership just login:
Your new member will
receive a brief note saying that they are being added to the membership.
Within the next
business day (sometimes 2 business days) the record will be approved and
they will receive their official "Welcome to NACCE” email with their login
Go to "Manage Profile" and Click onto "Sub-Accounts”(underneath "Edit Bio”).
- Click onto "Create Sub-Account”.
pop-up window will read: "You will be signed out of your account if you wish to create or attach a sub-account. Are you sure you want to continue?" Click
Under "Registration Information” and add the username (All usernames must be the email address of the person being added onto your
organization), Add the subaccounts name and their college or organization from the drop-down window.
"Continue” The page header will
read "NACCE Member Registration Step 2”
Fill in the
entire form using the default password "nacceinc1”. (password can be changed later)
"Presidents for Entrepreneurship” blank. We will fill that in, if
Note: If members
leave your college please make sure to contact NACCE so we can delete their
Q: What kind of program has the fastest
Return On Inverstment?
Q: What is an
entrepreneurship center is any point where current and/or potential
entrepreneurs (clients/students) can access information and other resources.
It can be a simple as
a web page with perhaps a scheduled time and place where clients/students can
speak with instructors and/or advisers. It can also be as
elaborate as a dedicated building with multi-use incubation space, access to
business development organizations along with a busy calendar of organized
events such as business plan competitions, classes, seminars, workshops and
entrepreneur/student club meetings.
A: Below is a brief
list of the four most common types of entrepreneurship programs we see. They are
listed starting from the longest and going to the shortest ROI (Return On
They can all be
great, but if you have to start in only one place that enhances or adds to the success of your small
business community is usually has the fastest ROI. See Business Growth or
The goodwill, alumni and track record that comes with these offerings can help
you establish firmer support from the business community (especially from
entrepreneurs) which can assist you with building a longer-term investment
projects such as a cross campus or other academic program.
entrepreneurship or (Small) Business Management/Administration degree with
entrepreneurship emphasis. This one usually takes the most time and resources
to develop. However it is important for seeding advanced entrepreneurial
development for the 18-24 year old demographic and generally provides the most
in-depth approach. These are designed specifically for students planning to
transfer to a 4-year college, therefore articulation agreements are central to
Cross Campus: (These
can be either Academic or Non-Credit depending on your state definitions):
Generally these are anywhere from 15-30 credit hours or 45-90 contact hours and
yield an entrepreneurship certificate designed to be integrated with or
compatible with 1 or 2 year degrees, diplomas or certificates.
These can give a
faster ROI than standard business/entrepreneurship degrees, but their big
strength is diversity. They can appeal to anyone who sees their program as a
foundation for starting their own business – but do not necessarily identify
themselves as business students.
entrepreneurship certificate pathways include: Automotive, Cosmetology,
Construction, Trades, CDL/Trucking, Digital Design, Graphic Arts, HVAC, IT, Welding, Wine-making, or programs that are natural portals to
venture creation in your community.
These are generally offered as non-credit, but can be offered as credit courses
as well. There are many different types of programs but one on the most common
type is a 9-12 week accelerated programs are focused on helping students take
their current skills and re-market them through a business in the fastest route
possible. Examples of these programs include FastTrac (Kaufman Foundation), CoreFour and NxLeveL. There are also
unique and specialized programs that have been developed by NACCE colleges.
Here’s an example of one focused
specifically on food product development.
Business Growth or
Improvement: (for current entrepreneurs) These are generally non-credit however
they can be offered for credit programs as well. These help already up and
running business owners expand and/or increase profitability or simply help them
with key function better by understanding standard practices.
This is the fastest
ROI, both in terms of enrollment and fulfillment as well as from a support
perspective. Cultivating this group can be a wise investment since
entrepreneurs who credit the college with helping them accelerate their
businesses, may be more open to supporting the college’s entrepreneurship
These programs can be
created by the college or purchased already constructed.
Many of the
established programs have minimum time-in-business and/or revenue requirements.
Some examples include, Goldman
Sachs’10,000 Small Businesses initiative and Interise’s Streetwise MBA program and PeerSpectives
Roundtables from the Edward Lowe Foundation.
On page 14 of this journal,
member Steven Bryant, Executive Director, Cook Center for Entrepreneurial
Studies at Ivy Tech Community College – Bloomington, describes how their Cook Center
CEO Roundtable (a PeerSpectives program) helps grow their local
economy by enabling entrepreneurs to find the help they need as well as help
Q: How do I post content to my member profile?
A:How to post
pictures, or other attachments to your NACCE profile:
Once logged in, look
for and select "Manage Profile” (on the far right margin of the
If you have not done
so already please take a few minutes and fill out your profile and upload a
picture. You can always add more to it or change things later.
Under "Content & Features” choose the option based on the
type of file you have:
gif or png formats) Photo Gallery
Word, Excel and PDF
and other files Files and Links
To Post a Photo:
If you have made a specific album prior to posting pictures you can
easily select that album to upload it into the album.
Look for the
"Photo gallery” icon under "Content & Features”
Then follow this
Upload a Photo
Choose File: Now
navigate to where the picture is located and select it.
Add a photo caption.
This will appear directly below the photo and serve as a title.
Tag the photo with
any appropriate keywords or terms, separated by commas (optional)
decide whether you’d like to allow comments or not. (We recommend that you do
allow them to give your NACCE colleagues an opportunity to converse about
to:” please select "Members only”.
To Post Doc, XLS, or PDF Files:
Look for the "Files and Links” icon under "Content & Features”
automatically be in the "Manage Files and Links” view, which will allow
you to add and edit what files appear on your profile page.
- Click "Add a New Item”
Under Item Type:
Select ‘File’ (unless you’re posting only a URL)
Type in an
Under ‘Visible to” check ‘Members Only’ (unless you want to be the only one who can access
Click ‘choose file’ and navigate the intended file
In the description
box below, type in a brief description of the file’s contents.
Make sure to check
the box to the left of the Upload Agreement.
- Click ‘Submit’ to upload the item
Take a look at
the updated Files & Links page and make sure that the graphic in the
"Visible” column is the one of two people (which means members can see it)
and of the one of the red padlock (which means it’s hidden from members).
You can also create
your own blog and pages for posting things such as a running column, links and
Q: How can I increase
enrollment in our entrepreneurship program & How can I insure that we have
the enrollment needed to sustain our program?
A: Enrollment issues
usually focus on three basics:
In brief, selecting
the right offerings that meet your community’s needs and desires will set the
foundation for all your entrepreneurship efforts.
Selection: Offering the right options for your community
- Promotion: Getting
the word out in the most effective and cost-efficient manner
Documenting your success to ensure referrals, favorable publicity and
capitalize on opportunities for funding.
Once you have made
the best selections as possible you will need to promote them throughout your
entire community. Not only will you want to reach those that are already
considering starting a new venture, but you will also want to create awareness
within your whole population as to the possibilities of pursuing an
entrepreneurial path. Some will discover that it is not the path for them or will
discover that they are not ready yet to take the plunge. You will want to
figure some attrition with each class or course cycle.
Once your program is
running you will want to document your successes in various ways so you can:
A) Share testimonials
with prospective students
B) Share stories,
numbers (self-created jobs, additional jobs, revenues etc.) and any data that
makes the case for maintaining and expanding your entrepreneurship efforts with
potential funders and supporters.
the right options for your community
individual classes or certificate or degree programs, the key questions are:
"Who are our
If your college’s key
service areas are rural towns with high job losses from a declining industrial
base, then your main population is likely to be older, less interested in
longer credit options and probably looking for training that can give them
modest but immediate results.
By contrast if your
service areas are more urban, affluent and young they may be more interested in
an in-depth entrepreneurial path that culminates in a 4-year degree from a
prestigious or nearby university.
Most likely you will
have multiple potential markets to address, in which case you will have to
consider which you want to address first and plan for the rest.
Next, try to
determine which markets are likely targets for your college and community. If
you are concerned about enrollment, amassing the largest group of potential
students will help you build critical mass and then reveal richer niche areas
of demand. To appeal to the widest span of demographics try to offer as many
pathways to completion as possible. The more choices students have for how long
and how deep their education is, the wider your range of potential students/customers
will be. If your population is often dependent on financial aid you will also
need to familiarize yourself with the ins and outs of your state’s particular
rules and restrictions.
For example, a simple
12-hour entrepreneurship certificate might stack into a variety of career and
technical programs, or into a business degree, or be complete by itself or even
be offered as non-credit for students not interested a formal studies program.
A non-credit seminar and workshop series might offer a certificate of
completion or competency for completing some or all of the seminars or
Below are some
potential markets. Try to determine which ones are the best matches for your
community by talking to potential students, entrepreneurs and people who are
well connected with business and demographic trends in your service areas, such
as your local SBDC, economic development agencies, chambers of commerce,
Workforce Investment Board and micro-enterprise NGOs. Think about what
strengths your area has as far as talent as well as the critical needs. For
example, if several small towns are rebuilding from natural disasters then the
construction-related trades will likely be in demand. Therefore holding a
series of own-your-own business boot-camps for those in the skilled building
trades could be a popular draw.
An example of
multiple pathways would be the cross-campus, short entrepreneurship certificate
that usually ranges from 9-16 hours.
Middle & High
Current CTE (Career
& Tech. Ed.)
Alumni CTE graduate
Business Owner (There are many sub-sectors to this)
It could stack into a
variety of career and technical programs, or into a business degree, or be
complete by itself or even be offered as non-credit certificate for students
not interested a formal studies program.
A non-credit seminar
& workshop series might offer a certificate of completion or competency for
completing some or all of the seminars or workshops offered.
Remember that you do
not necessarily need to create original offerings from scratch. Look around at
all your local business support providers in your communities. Are there ones
offering non-credit programs that the college might be able to partners with?
If so check into collaborating in some way.
Q: What is cross campus curriculum and what is an infusion model?
A:There are many
variations depending on the college. However the idea is basically to break
entrepreneurship out of the "business-only” box, distill it down to a core
message, then make it available to every viable learning path across the
Here are some CTE
programs that are likely candidates for starting a business.
technology, building and construction trades, culinary, cosmetology, esthetics,
graphic design, HVAC, hospitality, interior design, IT services, photography,
web design, etc
In recent years the
emphasis has turned from long-term degrees to shorter term certificates that
stack into or added onto various career & technical programs. Two-year
degrees with established articulation paths to 4-year and universities are
still important and fill a specific need for advanced skills. However shorter
certificate and accelerated paths often offer greater accessibility for a
larger part of the community.
The Infusion model
takes it one step further and includes addressing the administrative functions
of the college itself and making them more entrepreneurial by addressing the
culture and challenging convention.
Q: What are some
examples of programs that work with a cross campus curriculum approach?
A: Any learning path
(certificate or degree) that can serve as an independent business is
appropriate including: Agriculture, Automotive Technology, Construction,
Engineering, HVAC, Hospitality, IT, Cosmetology, Culinary, Graphic Design,
Manufacturing, Photography, and Welding and too many more to list.
We’ve even seen
typical academic paths show strong student interest and benefit from
The creative arts are
especially competitive and have a growing number of graduates who will end up
as self-employed for at least part of their career.
Check out this webinar to hear Cuyuga Community College (Auburn, NY) talk about
their approach to infusing entrepreneurship in almost every corner of the
Ecosystem: The Infusion Model
How to Infuse Entrepreneurship Across Campus
Download PowerPoint Slides: http://www.mediafire.com/?duwjnkyznn1
Terms: Cross-campus, infusion, across the
curriculum, Entrepreneurship Certificate, mini-certificate, Business
Join Us! Conference and
QuickTip: To speed up the process of creating an entrepreneurial
culture on your campus check out Quick Start Guide #2, Building A
Creative and Innovative Culture At Your Community College
the word out about your program in the most effective and cost-efficient manner
When trying to reach
all your potential markets the key strategies are to identify your allies and
gather or if possible join forces.
Identify Your On-Campus Allies
Identifying and staying on contact with other people at your college who have
an interest in entrepreneurship can offer great benefits to your growing
program. Besides preventing duplication of efforts you might find natural
feeder paths to your program or be able to provide a helpful referral to one of
coordination credit and non-credit programs have teamed up to promote their
unique strengths, sometimes even in the same marketing campaigns or pieces.
For example the
brochure promoting your program might also promote one-day seminars for ‘Social
Media for Small Business’ or ‘Understanding Cash-Flow‘ workshops. They might
promote classes that teach Quickbooks or Email Marketing.
So a simple
one-program brochure or flyer then becomes a mini catalog of offerings for
both would-be and current business owners.
Seeing more options –
credit, non-credit, short training and longer programs positions the college as
the go-to source for whatever kind of entrepreneurial training someone might be
programs from different departments, make sure you know how permanent these
offerings are or keep your printing batches small so you can update them with
Offering NACCE member
seats is a great way to reach across to different departments that may have an
interest in entrepreneurship. Besides the business departments, workforce
development, continuing education, technical and trade, as well as SBDCs your
community’s, micro-enterprise organizations and economic development agencies
are often interested in entrepreneurship education resources. As long as
they’re involved with your programs or planning they can also hold a NACCE seat
on the college’s membership.
Also view "Who can I add
to my membership?” in Member Basics FAQ.
Identify Your Community Allies
Every community has a local business and business support organizations that
can act as messengers by repeating and amplifying your marketing messages. See
Make a list of
contacts you have in these areas and ones you don’t. Reach out to them
individually or establish a meeting space and time and invite everyone to it so
everyone can explore and expose what everyone is doing.
Meeting and regular
communication with a community dedicated to supporting entrepreneurial
development is a great way to eliminate duplication, increase referrals and
collaboration as well as getting others to repeat and amplify messages about
your program to their specific audiences. If a meeting isn’t possible, try to
start a monthly email, a list-serve or a Facebook page or group.
All business support
organizations such as SBDC (Small
Business Development Centers)
All SCORE chapters, Chambers
of Commerce and neighborhood CDC’s. Economic development offices can be at
city, county and regional levels
development and micro-lending organizations. Check AEO for ones in your area: http://bit.ly/MicroEnterpriseSupport
groups such as Rotary, Kiwanis & Toastmasters and Young Professionals
Industrial Groups for
the industries that are strongest in your area
Real estate brokers
Banks and other
entrepreneurship based programs and organizations
representatives focused on community and economic development
accounting, advertising and legal firms
especially business editors and writers.
entrepreneurs with an interest in rebuilding the economy.
or economic data collection specialists.
Local houses of
worship or any group concerned about the local economy.
Besides printed brochures and several lengths of written copy for social media,
you’ll need to draw a mental perimeter around your entire campus and community
and try to think of all the ways you can reach your target markets (above). Who
do they listen to? Where do they look for information?
Check out this marketing
Here are some
examples of member marketing pieces.
QuickTip: To get up to speed quickly learn about how you can find and
leverage Community Partnerships you can also purchase the Quick Start Guide #3
Community Partnerships in Support of Entrepreneurship” for a
distilled collection of examples on how successful colleges have pulled their
local communities together to support their vision for supporting
entrepreneurial development and education.
Q: How can I find testimonials if we are just starting, or restarted our program?
A: If you are trying
to launch a new program or revitalize an old one you are not likely to have a
lot of success stories from former students. However, you may still have some entrepreneurial allies in your alumni community that will
be willing to come and speak to former students, or give an overall testimonial
about the college that highlights your program.
"I received my technical training at Hampden County Community College and
now I have a successful business with 5 employees. I only wish I had an option to
get an entrepreneurship certificate like the one they are now offering. It would
have saved me a lot of time, money and frustration.”
are very empathetic to the needs of nascent and would be entrepreneurs and can
be tapped to speak to students, judge a business plan competition or fill many
other supportive roles. Some can also be tapped for potential funding.
your success to ensure referrals, favorable publicity and capitalize on
opportunities for funding of all the three
factors (selection, promotion) tracking is the trickiest. Loosing track of
students and what they will be doing as far as their future ventures can be a
One of the first
steps is to contact your alumni relations department or person, and ask what
outcome questions they ask in surveys they use to track former students. The
vast majority of them only ask about job type and status and sometimes income.
As soon as possible try to get your alumni relations office to recognize and
ask for entrepreneurial outcomes – for all alumni.
"Are you working: full-time, part-time, unemployed” need another outcome
such as "self-employed” and "owner of a business with employees”.