11-23-11-ftcc-logo.jpgA new year is just around the corner, and people are starting to plan their 2012 New Year’s resolutions! If one of your resolutions involves starting a business or changing careers, the Small Business Center (SBC) at Fayetteville Technical Community College (FTCC) has a great opportunity for you. SBC was awarded a grant from the City of Fayetteville! The City Development Block Grant lets SBC offer the Rural Entrepreneurship Through Action Learning (REAL) course in conjunction with a QuickBooks course. This opportunity is free to individu-als who have a strong interest and desire to start their own business in the service-related fields of welding, carpentry, HVAC services, esthetics, cosmetology or bar-bering. These classes will provide the proper tools and resources for the entrepreneur to start and stay in business.

REAL is a business course designed to assist and empower a person with entrepreneurial interests and abilities to plan and start a business or trade. The REAL curriculum uses active learning and experiential methods that have proven to be a highly successful teaching style for adults and entrepreneurs. The objective of the course is to have a complete business plan finished to use as a guide or roadmap to help the entrepreneur navigate through the journey of business ownership. The QuickBooks course assists the business owner with managing the financial part of the business: keeping track of sales, expenses, invoices, payroll and creating financial statements to help stay on top of business obligations with entities, such as the IRS, Department of Revenue, suppliers and vendors. Participants will learn to make sure their business stays profitable and have a positive cash flow. After completion of both courses, the aspiring entre-preneur will be better equipped to manage a business for success.

According to the N.C. Employment Security Commission September 2011 report, Fayetteville’s unemployment rate of 10 percent has resulted in 13,958 people being out of work. The solution to the problem is to create and grow jobs. The industry fields listed above are service industries that typically can lead to business opportunities. Individuals who attend a community col-lege to acquire training in HVAC services, carpentry, cos-metology, etc., will likely go into business for themselves. The intent of the grant is to assist individuals with these trades to acquire the knowledge, skills set and resources to create their own business and help decrease the rising unemployment rate.

FTCC’s Small Business Center mission is to increase the success rate of small businesses in Cumberland County by assisting prospective and established small-business persons reach their full potential by utilizing all resources available. According to last year’s SBC statistics, 1,300 participants attended 85 seminars, eight businesses were started and 50 jobs were created and retained.

The SBC offers free weekly seminars; counseling sessions are also available to clients at no charge. If you are interested in learning more about the Small Business Center, visit our website at

For more information on the dates and requirements on the REAL grant, please con-tact Tamara Bryant at 678-8462/8496. Class size is limited, and income qualifications must be met.

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