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Local course series seeks to help with going into business



Staff Writer


Aspiring business owners and entrepreneurs in the area will have the opportunity to see what lies under the surface of starting a business, as the Small Business Center of Gaston College offers a series of courses at its Lincoln campus, for those looking to expand their knowledge on how to operate an efficient business in the new year.

Mondays, from January 28 to April 8, participants will have various sessions available to them for free at the local branch of the community college. Different days and times will be offered at the Kimbrell campus for students, however.

The last Monday of January, participants will kick off the 11-week class with “Profit is Not a Four-Letter-Word” — a look at the relationship between pricing, costs and profits, said Stephanie Michael-Pickett, director of marketing and public relations for Gaston College.

Exposing attendees to certain areas that need consideration when determining how to price products and services will get the ball in motion, as instructors walk the prospective self-employers through the developmental stages of their future endeavors.

Marketing, profits, how to plan for success, tax issues and other concerns and duties the business students will have to be aware of post-graduation, will be introduced weekly. The one-day-a-week course is designed to be both interactive and lecture-oriented, with an array of speakers coming to speak on the topic of discussion that week that best relates to what they do on a daily basis.

A banker will demonstrate the importance of having a business plan, an insurance agent will explore options with the group and an attorney will discuss legal obligations, among other professionals in related fields who will visit the class.

Start-A-Biz, the group that focuses primarily on Gaston and Lincoln counties and is responsible for bringing the seminars to the local community college, invites those interested in starting a business to fill out a preliminary assessment to see how ready students are to start their own company.

A list of resources are available through their website, directing hopefuls to the appropriate outlets to learn what contacts and connections are important to make in the community; defining vital terms and spelling out what questions to ask are also displayed on the page, too.

The sessions will be offered from 6:30 to 9 p.m. at the Lincoln Campus, 511 S. Aspen Street, in room 125. For more information on the lineup of classes, how to register, or other inquiries, call (704) 922-6447 or visit http://startabiz.gaston.edu.


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