Dublin Entrepreneurial Center
Veterans 'boot camp' offers skills for starting business
Physical training might be lacking at the boot camp slated for the Dublin Entrepreneurial Center next week.
But it won't come without challenges.
Dublin will sponsor its first Veterans Entrepreneurship Boot Camp June 17-21 at the DEC, 565 Metro Place South.
The camp curriculum comes from a Geneva Analytics program developed at Pasadena City College and is aimed at veterans and military members currently serving.
"Being a veteran myself and interacting with veterans' groups and knowing a lot of veterans are wanting to assimilate back into civilian life after service and there's a lot of active members in the military that are looking for ways to start a new business, we decided on this veteran boot camp to bring folks to the entrepreneurial center and give them an intense, week-long training opportunity," said Dana McDaniel, Dublin Deputy City Manager and Economic Development executive director.
"We called it a boot camp because it's an intense week of training," McDaniel said. "And they know all about that."
Programs encouraging veterans to develop business ideas go on around the country, but McDaniel said there aren't many locally.
"It will be a weeklong course immersed in entrepreneurship at the entrepreneurial center," he said.
"Geneva Analytics will be doing the training and we will be using their curriculum," McDaniel said.
"We'll introduce these folks to serial entrepreneurs and they will have a chance to learn about themselves relative to entrepreneurship and test some of their ideas or the ideas of others to advance the idea."
Next week's boot camp will train 28 veterans and active service members.
McDaniel said they'll leave with the know-how to put their own business plan together after sessions that run from 7:30 a.m. to 9 p.m.
"They'll also get some advice and consultation from the Small Business Counsel and experts in the fields of banking, accounting and legal services," he said.
The boot camp is a pilot program and McDaniel said he was told not to expect much interest.
Veterans, however, are coming from throughout the country to participate, thanks to veterans' groups spreading the word.
"It's hard to tell if it's something that will be in demand, but we did have a really good response to this first round," McDaniel said.
"I would have been happy with 15, but got 28 that seem to be well-qualified," he said.
"We really got veterans' groups behind this. With the advent of social media, we've got people coming from Iowa, Illinois, Kentucky and Ohio.
"There is only a handful from central Ohio."
The DEC offers entrepreneurial training throughout the year, but this is the first time for the Veterans Boot Camp. If all goes well and there is interest, it might return, McDaniel said.
"City Council focuses on veterans and they provide a lot of leadership in the community on that," he said.
"It's just one more way for the city to express our gratitude to these folks," he said.
"We have lots of programs people can take advantage of, but we thought we'd target veterans and active service members to see if there was a niche market ... and help them with their needs."
For more information about next week's Veterans Boot Camp or to get on the waiting list for the next event, look online at genevagi.com.