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Whitman’s national EBV kicks off second year at Florida State June 9
Whitman’s national EBV kicks off second year at Florida State June 9June 11, 2009Amy Schmitzaemehrin@syr.edu
Twenty veterans with disabilities from post-Sept. 11 conflicts reported to the Florida State University College of Business on June 9 to begin the Entrepreneurship Bootcamp for Veterans with Disabilities (EBV) program. Through June 17, the veterans will take classes, participate in workshops and breakout groups, and hear from industry professionals while they create or enhance their own business plans.
“We are very excited to welcome our second class of veterans,” says Randy Blass, assistant professor of organization behavior at Florida State and director of FSU’s EBV program. “The program is a proven success, and it is an honor to provide this service to those who have sacrificed so much for all of us.”
The program brings together the world-class faculty from the College of Business with entrepreneurs, disability experts, and small businesses to provide an intense education in entrepreneurship. The program, which begins with a three-week online course, culminates in the on-campus residency “boot camp” that is provided to the participants cost-free and is followed by 12 months of ongoing support and mentorship from faculty experts.
In this the second year of the program, veterans will hear a keynote address by a 2008 boot camp graduate, J.R. Martinez, who attended the program to learn how to market his persona and now is a regular cast member on the television show “All My Children.” Melvin T. Stith, dean of the Whitman School of Management at Syracuse University, which founded the EBV in 2007, gave remarks at the opening ceremony.
“The Entrepreneurship Bootcamp for Veterans with Disabilities program is all about opportunities,” says Blass, a former U.S. Air Force lieutenant colonel. “Returning from service is a daunting experience, and acclimating into civilian life can be extremely difficult. This program strives to ease this transition by giving each veteran participant the opportunity to create a business and develop a career.”
The EBV was created by Mike Haynie, assistant professor of entrepreneurship in the Whitman School and a former U.S. Air Force major. The EBV is now offered by a consortium of schools composed of SU, Florida State, Texas A&M University, the University of California, Los Angeles, and Purdue University. The program has been recognized by the Army Community Covenant program of the Department of the Army as a “national best practice” program.
“Universities have the capacity to change lives, and we are leveraging that capacity with the Entrepreneurship Bootcamp for Veterans with Disabilities,” says Caryn Beck-Dudley, dean of the College of Business at Florida State. “In our time of need, servicemen and women answered the call. Now the veterans are calling upon us for help, and this program is answering their call.”
For more information about the EBV, visit http://www.whitman.syr.edu/ebv or contact Ellie? O?Neill, EBV program coordinator, at (315) 443-6007 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Media queries can be directed to Amy Schmitz, Whitman School of Management director of communications, at (315) 443-3834 or email@example.com.