WILSON’S LOCAL PRINT AND DIGITAL COMMUNITY INSTITUTION SINCE 1896

A win-win for potential, existing business owners

By Jessica Bailey
Posted 12/30/19

Did you know Wilson Community College has a Small Business Center on campus that provides training and counseling for free? Did you know that Wilson was recently ranked 10th in the nation as the best …

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A win-win for potential, existing business owners

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Did you know Wilson Community College has a Small Business Center on campus that provides training and counseling for free? Did you know that Wilson was recently ranked 10th in the nation as the best small city in which to start a small business for 2019? In fact, our city has been ranked in the top 10 for the last three years.

So, who does the Small Business Center serve, and how does it support the WalletHub ranking? Your local SBC is part of a statewide Small Business Center Network. The network has more than 60 sites across North Carolina and is known as “the most expansive state-funded technical assistance program in the United States, having locations within a 30-minute drive of virtually every North Carolinian,” according to its website.

With a clear focus on entrepreneurship creating economic development within our city, the SBC at Wilson Community College places emphasis on launching startups and working with existing small businesses. It provides high quality, readily accessible education and training, counseling, referrals and information.

During any given year, between 120 and 160 potential or existing business owners from our community visit the college’s Small Business Center for support to evaluate a business idea’s feasibility, to determine the steps to register a business name, to learn how to reach their target market or for expanding an existing business.

“We serve Wilsonians and even clients outside of Wilson who come here for work and find us convenient,” said Melissa Evans, SBC director. While some clients seek to replace an existing or previous job with a new business, others are seeking a side-line business to supplement existing income or for extra retirement funds.

With recent business startups at WCC above the statewide norm, the college’s SBC is ranked first within the network for startup businesses with respect to this year’s anticipated budget. In 2019 alone, the SBC helped 30 new startup businesses. The college held 76 seminars with 850 attendees this year on topics from marketing to taxes and financing.

Small business growth is a win-win for our entire community because of its economic impact and the many generous ways that local business owners support the town. With Wilson ranked by WalletHub as 10th in the nation as the best small city in which to start a small business, it is indeed hard to believe that many folks are unaware of this service. SBC events and one-on-one confidential business counseling sessions are completely free and open to the public.

For more information, contact Melissa Evans, SBC director, at 252-246-1232 or visit our website at www.wilsoncc.edu for a complete list of seminars.

WHAT’S HAPPENING

• First day of classes — Jan. 6.

• Spring 2020 registration — Through Jan. 9.

Jessica Bailey is the director of institutional advancement at Wilson Community College. She can be reached at jbailey@wilsoncc.edu or 252-246-1271.

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