Last week I attended the Goldman Sachs two day training session for faculty in their nationwide program to grow small businesses and create jobs. The program is now offered in 17 cities and operates through local community college partners. The Miami partner is Miami Dade College.
In each city the program will run for five years with several groups of new entrepreneurs trained in each city each year. The national goal is 10,000 entrepreneurs trained by the end of five years and 2,000 have already completed the program.
The program includes classroom instruction, special skill development workshops (financial statements, negotiation, legal), continuous mentoring by full time advisors and access to various sources of capital. The curriculum was developed by Babson College and is complete and very well thought out.
The curriculum was designed to work with business owners regardless of education level or work experience. For example, there are no textbooks, pre-assigned readings, excel spreadsheets or accounting classes, as one might expect to find in a college environment. The curriculum and pedagogy would also be suitable for high schools to use in their classrooms. The absence of textbooks, readings, etc. might allow students to simply follow their passion to start a business.
To apply for the program a business needs to meet three requirements:
- Revenue of $400 thousand to $2 million
- In business 2 years
- Have 4 employees
After submitting an application, business owners go through an interview process. The entire program is described here and the application can be found here. Applications in Miami will re-open shortly for the second group of business owners to go through the program.
I will be teaching a module on business opportunity and a session on negotiation.
I believe the program is conducted only in English.