Wake Technical Community College’s Small Business Center was recently named the Research Triangle Region Center of Excellence.
The award, presented by N.C. Community College System Office, recognizes progress and accomplishments in the 2011-12 fiscal year in the Research Triangle Region, which includes seven centers that serve 15 counties. The Wake Tech center is located on the Western Wake Campus, at 3434 Kildaire Farm Road in Cary.
“Wake Tech’s Small Business Center has a long history of excellence in assisting small business in Wake County,” said Fred Gebarowski, the director of Wake Tech’s Small Business Center. “I’m delighted to be able to continue that tradition of helping people start businesses and become successful contributors to our area’s economy and employment.”
The Wake Tech Small Business Center is one of 58 centers across the state. The centers provide free counseling to small business owners along with various seminars, workshops and classes at no or minimum costs.
The recognition cited “outstanding business success story” highlighting work done with the nonprofit You Call This Yoga. Gebarowski counseled and helped the nonprofit’s founder Howie Shareff formalize his business process, commercialize his books, CDs and other products, and identify and reach his market.
“The Small Business Center has provided ongoing wisdom, patience and extremely helpful recommendations since then,” Shareff stated, according to a Wake Tech report.
The award also cited the Wake center’s “Doing Business in the International Marketplace,” program, which helps small and medium size businesses learn about importing and exporting opportunities, trade regulations and gaining entry to the international marketplace.
The program, presented in partnership with N.C. State University College of Textiles and the N.C. Department of Commerce International Trade Division, also includes an annual on location training trip, which was held in Peru this year.
The center’s overall performance was also cited, which includes 120 seminars with 2,455 participants, 539 small business clients counseled, 48 businesses started and 278 jobs created or retained.
Wake Tech was among six small business centers receiving regional excellence awards during the N.C. Business Advisors’ Conference in Wilmington last month. The Excellence Awards Committee reviewed submissions from the 58 small business centers across the state. The selections were made from self-nominations, which were included in the centers’ annual reports.
Robeson Community College was named the Southeast Region Small Business Center of Excellence and recognized as the 2012 N.C. Small Business Center of Excellence.
Other small business centers that received recognition include Mayland Community College, Western Region Center of Excellence; Rowan-Cabarrus Community College, Charlotte Region Center of Excellence; Guilford Technical Community College, Piedmont-Triad Region Center of Excellence; and Coastal Carolina Community College, East/Northeast Region Center of Excellence.
“Small Businesses are a vital part of North Carolina’s economic growth,” said N.C. Community College System President Scott Ralls. “Businesses launched through the support of our centers have met community needs, secured military contracts and provided countless employment opportunities to the residents of the communities they serve. From drafting their business plan, to opening day and beyond, the staff of our Small Business Centers are helping potential entrepreneurs find success as business owners. ”
For more information about the Wake Tech Small Business Center, go here.