The City of Winter Park Community Redevelopment Agency (CRA) is partnering with the National Entrepreneur Center (NEC) to offer free resources for aspiring and existing business owners with the creation of the Winter Park Business Academy (WPBA).
The organization will facilitate access to expert assistance and tools that can help with growth, finances, and getting new ventures off the ground. WPBA will also host events and workshops produced in cooperation with the NEC.
“Specifically, in Winter Park, we’ll work to complement and grow the existing business support services currently offered,” said NEC President Belinda Ortiz Kirkegard. “Together we will take our expression of collaborative impact to another level.”
Founded in 2003 through public and private partnerships, the NEC has earned national attention for its collaborative approach to small business development with 21 resource partners including BizLink Orange, Central Florida International Trade Office, and SCORE (Service Corps of Retired Executives).
“The intent of the program is to be taylor-made to the types of resources that are needed,” Kyle Dudgeon, assistant division director of Winter Park CRA/Economic Development told the32789. “In order to be responsive to the Winter Park business community and entrepreneurs, the NEC will connect with additional partners as we hear feedback.”
Dudgeon also says the program will support a hybrid model of meetings at city facilities, one-on-one coaching, and individual virtual meetings. And while NEC headquarters is located at Orlando’s Fashion Square Mall, WPBA events will be specific to Winter Park in content and location. “The intent of the program is to bring NEC resources to Winter Park’s front door here in the city,” he said. “Businesses/entrepreneurs who register for the program can schedule individual training both virtually and on-site in Winter Park.”
The local small business community is invited to the inaugural WPBA event on Tuesday, Oct. 10, from 5:30-7 p.m. at the Winter Park Events Center, located at 1050 W. Morse Blvd. NEC Program Manager Kathy Cook and SCORE Chapter Chair Lois Perry will be onhand to discuss the academy’s resources. Registration for the free event is recommended and available at BizLinkOrange.com/WinterPark.