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Guest Opinion: Celebrate veterans this Fourth of July
By: Calvin W. Goings
Small Business Administrator
The Declaration of Independence was signed on July 4, 1776. Each year Americans celebrate on the Fourth of July with fireworks, parades, barbecues, baseball games and family reunions. As we celebrate our veterans who served from the American Revolution, to the Civil War, to World Wars I and II, to the Vietnam War, to the war in Iraq, we remember and thank our veterans who have been protecting our freedom since our country was born.
The Small Business Administration also celebrates veterans. As these men and women transition to civilian life, we stand ready with training courses to make their dreams of business ownership a reality.
The very popular SBA-sponsored “Boots to Business: from Service to Startup” is a worldwide program offered as a component of the Department of Defense’s redesigned Transition Assistance Program. The curriculum was developed to introduce transitioning service members to business ownership. It connects them to resources in their local communities.
And, now SBA has added another program: “Boots to Business: Reboot,” an entrepreneurship training course for veterans to be held in 12 cities across the U.S., including Seattle (Aug. 20-21) in Region 10.
Each event, led by SBA Resource Partners and industry experts from Syracuse University’s Institute for Veteran and Military Families, will host up to 100 veterans for a two-day Introduction to Entrepreneurship class.
“Boots to Business: Reboot” will introduce veterans to the fundamentals of business ownership and lead participants through the key steps for evaluating business concepts and developing a business plan. The program also will introduce participating veterans to a network of lifetime business support available locally across the U.S. by introducing them to SBA’s network of Veteran Business Outreach Centers, Women’s Business Centers, Small Business Development Centers and SCORE counselors.
Following the two-day training, participants will be eligible to register for “Foundations of Entrepreneurship,” an eight-week, online course led by instructors from IVMF that offers in-depth instruction on the elements of a business plan and techniques and tips for starting a business.
After completing “Boots to Business: Reboot,” participants will have the tools and knowledge they need to identify a business opportunity, draft a business plan, connect with local resources and launch their small businesses.
The “Boots to Business: Reboot” events will kick off at the White House on July 11-12 and culminate on Aug. 25-26, at the American Legion National Convention in Charlotte, N.C.
When you are celebrating this Fourth of July, remember a veteran. Let them know that they can find out more information or register for these events by visiting the “Boots to Business: Reboot” event website at http://boots2business.org/reboot.aspx.