The Small Business Center Network of the NC Community College System is celebrating 30 years of providing support and assistance to small businesses and start-ups across North Carolina. Small Business Centers (SBCs) are located at each of the state’s 58 community colleges, providing confidential business counseling and seminars to small business owners and entrepreneurs.
Created in1984 when the North Carolina General Assembly funded 14 SBCs, the Small Business Center Network (SBCN) had expanded to include at least one SBC at each community college by 1995. Each year, the centers assist in starting an average of 650 businesses and help create and retain more than 3,000 jobs.
Today, with more than 60 sites, the Small Business Center Network is known as the most expansive state-funded technical small business assistance program in the United States with locations within a 30-minute drive of almost every North Carolinian.
“The Small Business Center Network is unique in our ability to offer counseling services, seminars/workshops, and resources directly tailored to the current business climate in our communities,” said HCC SBC Director, Katy McLean Gould. “ With a Small Business Center located within a short drive of every North Carolinian, each center is well versed in the needs of local businesses and is quick to adjust educational offerings or locate the appropriate resources to meet the ever changing needs of our local business climate.”
Haywood Community College’s SBC provides free, confidential, one-on-one counseling services customized to meet the needs of any venture. The SBC also offers a wealth of seminars and workshops designed to meet the needs of Haywood County business owners and budding entrepreneurs. Seminar topics range from a three-day QuickBooks Basic for Business Owners to Business Essentials with the NC Department of Revenue to Strategic Marketing for the Nonprofit Business Owner.
Melanie Williams, owner of Pixels in My Pocket Web Design, attended HCC’s Small Business Roundtable where she was able to network with other small business owners. “As a result, I am now collaborating with another small business owner,” she explains. “This collaboration is resulting in great growth for my business.
“As a small business owner who came into a project that grew very rapidly, Katie helped me decide what my best product was. She helped me dial into what my strengths are. She gave me clarity on my business.”
The mission of the SBCs is to increase the success rate and number of viable small businesses in North Carolina by providing high quality, readily accessible assistance to prospective and existing small business owners, with the goal of job creation and retention.
For a complete list of services, seminars and upcoming workshops, visit SBC.Haywood.edu or call (828)627.4512.