Calendar of Events

PTAC Orientation

When: Tuesday, August 1, 2017; 2:00pm - 4:00pm
Where: WMU Napier Campus, 2785 E Napier Ave Benton Harbor, MI
Cost: FREE

Facilitator:  Kim Bourner, Technical Assistance Specialist - Southwest Michigan Procurement Technical Assistance Center

In this workshop participants will learn:
  • Requirements to sell to federal, state and local governments
  • How to become a government vendor
Registration Deadline:  July 25th 2017

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Ransomware

When: Tuesday, August 8, 2017; 11:30am - 1:30pm
Where: WMU Napier Campus, 2785 E Napier Ave, Benton Harbor, MI
Cost: $15.00

Facilitator:  Trent Watford, Founder and Owner of Tech Help

Ransomeware is a dangerous and costly computer threat to businesses.  This workshop will:
  • Define Ransomeware
  • Teach participants how to avoid it from happening
Registration Deadline: August 1, 2017

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What's On Tap to Open a Microbrewery

When: Thursday, August 10th, 2017; 1:00pm - 5:00pm
Where: Hilton Garden Inn, 1300 Cinema Way, Benton Harbor, MI
Cost: $25.00

Facilitators:
  • Simon Rusk - The Livery in Benton Harbor, MI
  • Chris Mason – Watermark Brewery in Stevensville, MI  
  • Brian McMahon – Kreis Enderle in St. Joseph, MI
  • Kurt Cox – Michigan Liquor Control Commission (MLCC), Grand Rapids, MI
  • Carrie Kosak -  1st Source Bank – South Bend, IN
  • Scott Geik – 1st Source Bank - St. Joseph, MI
 This workshop will: 
  • Provide financial, legal and licensing requirements from an expert panel\
  • Offer the opportunity to meet with local microbrewery owners
After the workshop, there will be craft beer tasting hosted by Hilton Garden Inn.

Registration Deadline:  August 3, 2017

Register

What's on Tap: Brew Tasting

August 10, 2017 at 5:00 PM


1300 Cinema Way 
Benton Harbor, MI 49022



After the "What's on Tap to Open a Mircobrewery" workshop, the Hilton Garden Inn will host a beer-tasting reception to sample local beers and mingle with brewers!

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Is Your Business Sustainable?

When: Wednesday, August 16, 2017; 11:00am - 2:00pm
Where: WMU Napier Campus, 2785 E Napier Ave Benton Harbor, MI
Cost: $20.00

Facilitator:  Carolyn Rourke, Growth Consultant with the Michigan Small Business Development Center

This workshop will cover topics related to:
  • Sustainability of your business
  • Sales forecasting, profitability and proactive management
Registration Deadline:  August 9, 2017

Register

PTAC Marketing & Research Mining Opportunities

When: Wednesday August 16th, 2017; 2:00pm - 4:00pm
Where: WMU Napier Campus, 2785 E Napier Ave
Cost: FREE

Facilitator: Kim Bourner, Technical Assistance Specialist from Southwest Michigan Procurement Technical Assistance Center (PTAC)

PTAC Orientation is the prerequisite for this course.  This class teaches you how to:
  • Market your business to government agencies
  • Research which agencies are appropriate for your business
Registration Deadline: August 9, 2017

Register

Blueprint to Success Fundamentals Of Marketing

When: Saturday, August 26th, September 9th; 9:00am - 11:00am, September 16th and September 23rd, 2017; 8:30am - 1:30pm
Where: Lake Michigan College - 2755 E Napier Ave
Cost: $250.00

To gain the most benefit from this workshop, it is encouraged to sign up for the entire series.  The cost per workshop is $65.00.  Blueprint for Success: Fundamentals of Marketing, which is held on August 26, 2017, is a prerequisite for all remaining workshops.    

Combining the knowledge of marketing fundamentals with hands-on workshops to develop marketing collateral including a logo, website and promotional pieces, the Blueprint For Success workshop series will provide participants with tangible deliverables they can utilize right away to better leverage their businesses' competitive advantages. 
August 26:  Blueprint for Success:  The Fundamentals of Marketing
Participants will create their working marketing plan and a creative brief to use when developing marketing assets for their businesses. This class is a prerequisite for the follow-up workshops.
 You will leave the workshop with:
  •  A working marketing plan
  • A creative brief to use when developing marketing assets for your business. 
September 9: Blueprint for Success:  Logo Design Workshop
With the guidance and assistance of professional designers, participants will create a company logo for use on their website, signage, communications and more. 
You will leave the workshop with:
  •  A company logo for use on your website, signage, communications, etc.
  • Resource reference guide and tip sheet 
Prerequisites:
  • Blueprint for Success: The Fundamentals of Marketing
  • Completed creative brief
 September 16: Blueprint for Success: Website Design Workshop
Using a customizable web platform of their choosing, participants will begin to create their own homepage and landing page with assistance from web designers and gain the skills needed to finish the site independently.
You will leave the workshop with:
  • Skills needed to develop and publish a business homepage and landing page
  • Website tip sheet and resource guide
  • Prerequisites:
  • Blueprint for Success:  The fundamentals of Marketing
  • Completed creative brief
  • Company logo 
Pre-registration with website platform (Program facilitators will use wix.com for demonstration purposes.  If you have an existing website or membership with a host provider, you may build a new site or edit your current site through this process)
 
Please bring any photography associated with your business you'd like to include
 
September 23: Blueprint for Success: Promotional Marketing Workshop
Participants will discover techniques to drive new and repeat business. With support from graphic designers, they will also create branded marketing assets for use in raising awareness of their products and growing their businesses. 
You will leave the workshop with branded template for:
  •  A promotional flyer
  • Two online banner ads
  • Social media assets 
Prerequisites:
  • Blueprint for success: The Fundamentals of Marketing
  • Completed creative brief
  • Company logo
Registraton Deadline:  August 18, 2017
 

Register

Work for Yourself@50+ - Saint Joseph

When: Tuesday, August 29; 9:00am - 11:00am
Where: Area Agency on Aging - 2900 Lakeview Avenue, St Joseph, MI 49085
Cost: FREE

Are you over 50 and looking for ways to improve your current financial situation? Have you ever dreamed of being your own boss? Work for Yourself@50+ has the information you need to succeed.

AARP Foundation’s Work for Yourself@50+ initiative will help you gain the knowledge, support, and resources you need to make informed decisions about working for yourself and take the right first steps toward successful self-employment.
The decision to start your own business can be both exciting and daunting.  Work for Yourself@50+ breaks the choices down for older adults in an approachable way through five steps:
·         A careful consideration of the potential benefits and risks of working for yourself
·         Exercises to help develop the self-employment idea
·         A realistic overview of what it takes to pursue a self-employment opportunity
·         Guidance to help avoid pitfalls and scams
·         Ways to find trustworthy support and services
The Women's Business Center at Cornerstone Alliance is hosting a free workshop near you on August 29, 2017.  Call 888-339-5617 to register.

For additional information, visit aarpfoundation.org/workforyourself.  Work for Yourself@50+ is made possible in part through a grant from The Hartford.

Register

Succession Planning - Preserving Your Business

When: Thursday, September 14th, 2017; 11:30am - 1:00pm
Where: Cornerstone Chamber of Commerce, 811 Ship Street, Suite 303
Cost: $20.00

Facilitators: Becky Young, Financial Advisor with Edward Jones & Attorney Brian McMahon

This workshop will educate business owners about:
  • Tools and strategies to maintain and preserve your business
  • Key Person Disability Insurance; Key Person Life Insurance
  • Deferred Compensation; Buy-Sell Agreements; DisabilityInsurance
  • Life Insurance Retirement Plans and Estate Considerations
Registration Deadline: September 7, 2017

Register

Work for Yourself@50+ - Dowagiac

When: Thursday, September 21; 1:00pm - 3:00pm
Where: Cass County Council on Aging - 227 S. Front Street, Dowagiac, MI
Cost: FREE

Are you over 50 and looking for ways to improve your current financial situation? Have you ever dreamed of being your own boss? Work for Yourself@50+ has the information you need to succeed.

AARP Foundation’s Work for Yourself@50+ initiative will help you gain the knowledge, support, and resources you need to make informed decisions about working for yourself and take the right first steps toward successful self-employment.
The decision to start your own business can be both exciting and daunting.  Work for Yourself@50+ breaks the choices down for older adults in an approachable way through five steps:
·         A careful consideration of the potential benefits and risks of working for yourself
·         Exercises to help develop the self-employment idea
·         A realistic overview of what it takes to pursue a self-employment opportunity
·         Guidance to help avoid pitfalls and scams
·         Ways to find trustworthy support and services
The Women's Business Center at Cornerstone Alliance is hosting a free workshop near you on September 21, 2017.  Call 888-339-5617 to register.

For additional information, visit aarpfoundation.org/workforyourself.  Work for Yourself@50+ is made possible in part through a grant from The Hartford.

Register

2017 Celebrating the Entrepreneur: "Wear it Well"

September 28, 2017 at 11:00 AM



Shadowland on Silver Beach
333 Broad Street
St. Joseph, MI
11:30 am - 1:00 pm

"Wear it Well" will feature keynote speakers from The Runway, a Michigan-based incubator supporting evolving fashion entrepreneurs in establishing and growing their business; followed by a fashion show of local models wearing the latest in business attire.  

Register

Work for Yourself@50+ - Lawrence

When: Wednesday, October 11; 9:00am - 11:00am
Where: Van Buren Conference Center - 490 S. Paw Paw Street, Paw Paw, MI
Cost: FREE

Are you over 50 and looking for ways to improve your current financial situation? Have you ever dreamed of being your own boss? Work for Yourself@50+ has the information you need to succeed.

AARP Foundation’s Work for Yourself@50+ initiative will help you gain the knowledge, support, and resources you need to make informed decisions about working for yourself and take the right first steps toward successful self-employment.
The decision to start your own business can be both exciting and daunting.  Work for Yourself@50+ breaks the choices down for older adults in an approachable way through five steps:
·         A careful consideration of the potential benefits and risks of working for yourself
·         Exercises to help develop the self-employment idea
·         A realistic overview of what it takes to pursue a self-employment opportunity
·         Guidance to help avoid pitfalls and scams
·         Ways to find trustworthy support and services
The Women's Business Center at Cornerstone Alliance is hosting a free workshop near you on October 11, 2017.  Call 888-339-5617 to register.

For additional information, visit aarpfoundation.org/workforyourself.  Work for Yourself@50+ is made possible in part through a grant from The Hartford.

Register

Aspiring Entreprenuers (SCORE)

When: Thursday, October 26th, 2017; 6:00pm - 8:00pm
Where: Harbor Country Chamber of Commerce, 15311 Three Oaks Rd, Three Oaks, MI 49128
Cost: $15.00

Do you have what it takes to start, manage and succeed in your own business?
Presented by SCORE and the Women’s Business Center at Cornerstone Alliance, this workshop is for entrepreneurial individuals thinking about starting their own business.
Topics to be covered include:
  • Attributes of successful entrepreneurs
  • Common myths about owning a business – a reality check
  • The many roles you’ll have as a business owner
  • How to turn an idea into a successful business
  • How to avoid costly mistakes that lead to failure
  • Locally available resources to Start, Grow & Succeed in your own business
The facilitator is Peter Loveland, Certified SCORE Mentor, with over 40 years of experience in industrial sales & marketing; as well as various general management positions.  Managing both small, privately owned organizations and $40 to $50 million divisions of multinational corporations; his expertise is in strategic planning, budgeting, business development and team building.

Register

Work for Yourself@50+ - St. Joe

When: Tuesday, November 7; 1:00pm - 3:00pm
Where: Area Agency on Aging - 2900 Lakeview Avenue, St Joseph, MI 49085
Cost: FREE

Are you over 50 and looking for ways to improve your current financial situation? Have you ever dreamed of being your own boss? Work for Yourself@50+ has the information you need to succeed.

AARP Foundation’s Work for Yourself@50+ initiative will help you gain the knowledge, support, and resources you need to make informed decisions about working for yourself and take the right first steps toward successful self-employment.
The decision to start your own business can be both exciting and daunting.  Work for Yourself@50+ breaks the choices down for older adults in an approachable way through five steps:
·         A careful consideration of the potential benefits and risks of working for yourself
·         Exercises to help develop the self-employment idea
·         A realistic overview of what it takes to pursue a self-employment opportunity
·         Guidance to help avoid pitfalls and scams
·         Ways to find trustworthy support and services
The Women's Business Center at Cornerstone Alliance is hosting a free workshop near you on Novemeber 7, 2017.  Call 888-339-5617 to register.

For additional information, visit aarpfoundation.org/workforyourself.  Work for Yourself@50+ is made possible in part through a grant from The Hartford.

Register