Waldron Center hosts small-business workshop

Jan. 20, 2016 | Waldron Center |

The Waldron Center for Entrepreneurship and Family Business hosted a small-business workshop Saturday, Jan. 21, from 8:30 a.m. until noon in the Mabee Business Center. The workshop was designed to introduce fundamentals of small business for anyone interesting in starting a business.

“Part of the mission for the Waldron Center is to put on activities for entrepreneurs that are not only students but also faculty and staff as well as people in the community. We want to be a source for both those who are entering into entrepreneurial endeavors and family businesses,” said Dr. Kenneth Olree, director of the Waldron Center.

Speakers for the event included Keith Riley, a banker at First Community Bank; Herb Lawrence, a lender relations specialist; and Rebecca Norman from the Arkansas Business and Technology Center in Little Rock. Speakers discussed banking, securing grant money, using technology and innovative products, and acquiring additional national resources.

“I am hoping that people who are sitting on the fence will know one way or another, ‘This is for me’ or ‘This is not for me,’” Olree said. “If they decide that it is for them, they will be able to get some useful information about resources.”

Junior international business major Jasmine Griffin is interested in beginning her own small business in the future. She planned to attend the workshop to learn more about the process.

“I am hoping to better understand the mechanics involved legally with starting a business and raising capital.” Griffin said. “I expect to gain a better orientation to the work involved with the process as well as background to how the speakers have been involved in starting their own enterprises.

This was the first workshop organized by the Waldron Center. According to Olree, the center plans to add more resources and services for students and businesses.

“One of our key goals is to be able to integrate student workers with businesses either as interns, as summer workers or potentially full-time employees,” Olree said. “We hope that the Waldron Center grows the Searcy economy as our students experience small business then start their own.”

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