COD Announces FY 2013 Center for Entrepreneurship Matching Funds Program
The Center for Entrepreneurship at College of DuPage is a vital resource for information on small businesses creation and expansion, entrance into the global market, and government contract proliferation in District 502.
Comprised of the Illinois Small Business Development Center (SBDC), Illinois International Trade Center (ITC), and Illinois Procurement and Technical Assistance Center (PTAC), the Center offer no- or low-cost training, coaching and advising services for proprietors throughout DuPage County.
“Over the last decade, the Center for Entrepreneurship has served nearly 7,000 clients and has provided more than 650 seminars and workshops attended by 25,000 participants,” said Donna Stewart, COD Dean of Business and Technology. “In addition, the Center has assisted with 145 business start-ups and 95 expansions, and has created nearly 600 jobs and retained another 55,500.”
Recently, the Illinois Community College Board suspended issuance of all Workforce Development grants. Subsequently, College of DuPage announced this week that it will provide a matching funds program in FY 2013 so the Center can continue its funding through cooperative agreements with federal sources such as the Small Business Administration and Defense Logistics Agency and through state partners such as the Illinois Department of Commerce of Economic Opportunity.
“As larger companies are consolidating and even disappearing from the economic landscape, the Center’s affordable training and advising programs are more important than ever to the small businesses in our community,” Stewart said. “We’re hoping to reduce the impact of recent state funding losses through the College’s matching funds program and by seeking additional partnerships and opportunities from agencies within District 502.”
According to a 2012 report from the National Economic Council, over the last 20 years, small and new businesses have been responsible for creating two out of every three net new jobs. In addition, the nation’s 28 million small firms employ 60 million Americans, half of the private sector workforce.
Through the Illinois International Trade Center, the Center for Entrepreneurship also provides expert guidance for Illinois companies seeking to export products and services. Assistance is also provided through the Illinois PTAC for businesses interested in securing government contracts. Since 2001, the Illinois ITC has assisted area companies with export sales exceeding $136 million and the Illinois PTAC has helped to procure government contracts exceeding $470 million.
“Ninety-five percent of the world’s population and two-thirds of the world’s total purchasing power reside outside the United States, providing $4 trillion in international commerce opportunities,” Stewart said. “In addition, the U.S. government annually purchases more than $300 billion worth of goods and services. Our services through the Illinois ITC and Illinois PTAC help business owners of all sizes identify these opportunities and sift through the processes of expansion into these markets.”
For more information, visit www.cod.edu/business_resources/entrepreneurship
or call (630) 942-2771.