Entrepreneurs Wanted: CO.STARTERS Program in Wheeling Now Accepting Applications
WHEELING, W.Va. – Sept. 11, 2023– Wheeling Heritage and The Regional Economic Development Partnership (RED) and are now accepting applications for the next cohort of CO.STARTERS, a program for entrepreneurs and small business owners. The program equips entrepreneurs of all kinds with the insights, relationships and tools needed to turn business ideas into action.
Those who are interested in starting a business or want to expand a current business can apply at redp.org/costarters. The program will meet once a week for ten weeks from 5:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. at the Wheeling Artisan Center. The next cohort will begin on Thursday, Oct. 5. Applications are due Sept. 22.
The cost to participate, including materials, is $200. Payment plans are available upon request. RED is a one-stop resource for development programs as well as business environment, demographic, economic and community information in the Wheeling region, including Ohio, Marshall and Wetzel Counties.
“We’ve seen tremendous success with this program in the past and I am excited to be able to offer it again. The graduates from this program have the tools necessary to turn their dream into reality. We also strive for this program to serve as a resource for existing business owners who feel stuck. No matter how long you’ve been in business, sometimes it’s important to step back and take some time to work on your business, rather than in your business,” said Valerie Piko, Program Development Manager at RED.
“CO.STARTERS works so well because it helps current or aspiring entrepreneurs get the skills they need to get started, and also provide them with a network of people who can help them succeed,” said Alex Panas, Program Manager at Wheeling Heritage. “We’ve seen several CO.STARTERS graduates go on to grow their businesses and become staples in our community, and I’m excited to see another group of entrepreneurs take advantage of this opportunity.”
Drawing from the experience of successful entrepreneurs and start-up veterans from around the globe, CO.STARTERS walks creative small-business owners through lean, effective business modeling methods in a simple and intuitive way, and with the help of a supportive community. Rather than treating a start-up like a large corporation and writing a detailed business plan, CO.STARTERS participants are encouraged to build and test small models first. In the process, participants receive real-time customer feedback, update their models to meet customer needs and avoid creating businesses based on incorrect assumptions.
So far, more than 75 entrepreneurs have completed CO.STARTERS. Every entrepreneur was in a different stage of the business creation process. Most had no business training or experience.
RED and Wheeling Heritage will continue to accept applications through Sept. 22, or until 12 people sign up.
To learn more about the program and to sign up, visit redp.org/costarters.