by J. Pat Fuller
It appears that entrepreneurship is beginning to flourish at Brevard Community College as students are seizing the opportunities to explore and experience being their own boss.
In 2000, Bernie Simpkins, local philanthropist and well known Brevard County entrepreneur, created a generous endowment at the college,The B. W. Simpkins Business Seminars for Entrepreneurial Development.Twice yearly since then, renowned national and regional entrepreneurs have been invited to tell their success stories, motivate, and instill a sense of personal responsibility and opportunity to students throughout the community.
Three years ago, $1,000 scholarships were added to the program, and the college joined theNational Association for Community College Entrepreneurship(NACCE), an organization dedicated to fostering free enterprise development at two-year colleges and technical institutions. Last fall, BCC began offering specialized entrepreneurship courses on the Titusville Campus. A new flexible Certificate Program allows students to take only what they need to start a business. And, a transferable AAS degree in entrepreneurship is expected to be in place by Fall 2010.
Students are responding! A records check at the college reveals that 35 students are taking or have taken entrepreneurship courses this academic year.
Success Stories from BCC
Brad Weinmann.Inspired by his travels and entrepreneurial bloodlines (his grandfather pioneered the hair dryer), Brad used his bike shop skills to develop a Pedi-Cab business. It's a bicycle-based human-powered rickshaw. You may have seen him pedaling about on weekends in downtown Melbourne or at a recent Tico Air Show in Titusville. He is also a Simpkins Scholarship winner for his idea.
Read full story in Spacecoast Business Magazine