Entrepreneur Identifies Need for Practical Small Business Academy
Friday, June 11, 2010
Posted by: Matthew Montoya
Entrepreneur Identifies Need for Practical Small Business Academy: St. Petersburg College Turns Idea into a Reality
Business case analysis addresses how an entrepreneurial academy was created and the technology used to support it
Minneapolis, MN – June 8, 2010 – Augusoft®, Inc. and the National Association for Community College Entrepreneurship (NACCE) have partnered to provide community colleges with the latest entrepreneurship program resources and tools while serving as advocates for entrepreneurial change. One of the many benefits this partnership provides is the sharing of leading entrepreneurial community colleges successes via case studies and business case analysis. Augusoft and NACCE are proud to partner with St. Petersburg College to showcase how a practical entrepreneurship program was created to benefit people interested in starting businesses in Florida's Pinellas County.
Genesis of an Idea
In 2007, a local entrepreneur approached James Olliver, provost of SPC's Seminole/eCampus, with a new idea. The entrepreneur saw a need for a practical entrepreneurship program that would help people in Pinellas County who were interested in starting businesses.
Olliver was intrigued. "He wanted a hands-on, nuts and bolts program that would connect people who have business ideas with people with business expertise. He wanted us to act quickly because he felt there was a need for quick action.”
Olliver soon brought together a group from the Seminole Chamber of Commerce and SPC's Corporate Training Department for a meeting with the entrepreneur about his vision of an entrepreneurship academy. "We ultimately decided we could fit this program into our Corporate Training Department in terms of logistical support, and we'd be able to do that faster than we could if we tried to create something on the credit side,” Olliver says.
Making the Numbers Work
Knowing that many would-be participants are out of work and may not have a lot of funds, the program team worked to make the Academy free or nearly free by offering scholarships paid for by the original program funding. The cost for the Academy is just $280. "We are able to offer a quality program at an affordable price, but still have it be revenue generating for the Corporate Training Department,” says SPC's Corporate Training Director James Connolly.
The first Small Business Practical Entrepreneurship Academy was run using the campus wide ERP solution, Oracle's PeopleSoft® but in January 2009 SPC was able to take advantage of its new capability to enroll participants using Lumens®, Augusoft's web-hosted Lifelong Learning Management System.
"Bottom line, we now have a seamless system that has allowed us to average 75 percent monthly online enrollments. Previously we did no online enrollment. This has freed up the staff to complete other tasks, limited the number of staff needed to answer phones, except for answering questions, and shows us daily our cash flow status,” says Connolly.
Request the complete Business Case Analysis paper.
About St. Petersburg College
With 10 primary learning sites and many smaller venues in Florida's Pinellas County, St. Petersburg College (SPC) attracts approximately 65,000 credit and noncredit students each year. Located in the most densely populated county in the Southeast, SPC serves a community of 1 million people and offers two-year programs and a limited number of four-year programs. To learn more visit spcollege.edu.
The National Association for Community College Entrepreneurship (NACCE) fosters economic development by serving as the hub for the dissemination and integration of knowledge and successful practices regarding entrepreneurship education and student business incubation. As a membership association, NACCE helps community colleges nationwide link their traditional role of workforce development with entrepreneurial development. The results are innovative programs and courses that advance economic growth and prosperity in the communities served by the colleges. To learn more about becoming a member or to make a tax deductible donation to this important work, visit www.nacce.com
Celebrating over sixteen years of innovation, Augusoft develops and maintains Lumens® - the first entirely web-hosted Lifelong Learning Management System. Augusoft Lumens is designed for the unique needs of continuing, community, corporate education and workforce development programs in the US and Canada. Complementing institution-wide ERP solutions, Lumens increases online registrations, streamlines business processes, reduces overhead and provides easy data analysis with proven ROI. Today, more than 1.8 million students register for classes using Lumens. Augusoft processes more than $362 million in transactions for its customers. Visit augusoft.net.
Copyright (c) 2010 Augusoft, Inc. All rights reserved. Augusoft, the Lumens name and identifier are registered trademarks of Augusoft, Inc. Use of the terms "partner" and "partnership" does not imply a legal partnership between Augusoft and any other party. Various trademarks held by their respective owners.