The University of Connecticut (UCONN) will host a new class of post-9/11 veterans Oct. 6-16 for the seventh annual Entrepreneurship Bootcamp for Veterans with Disabilities (EBV). The program is offered at no cost to participants. It combines the resources, infrastructure and world-class faculty of the UConn School of Business to give veterans with service-connected disabilities the cutting-edge training in entrepreneurship and small-business management necessary to pursue their dreams of owning a business. The UConn EBV class of 2016 includes 23 highly accomplished veterans.
Offered in three phases, the EBV provides veterans with skills necessary to successfully launch and grow a new business. Through online coursework, an intense on-campus experience and 12 months of ongoing support and mentorship via the EBV Post Program Support, veterans learn how to examine business feasibility, write business plans, raise capital, attract customers, develop a marketing strategy, and create collaborations in their communities. Participants spend their time on campus in classes and breakout sessions, hearing from industry professionals about best practices that will help them start a business and/or grow a current venture. The veterans arrive this year on Thursday, Oct. 6, and graduate on Saturday, Oct. 15.
To date, the program has graduated 135 veterans. The program has produced 104 for-profit businesses, 11 non-profits, 23 full-time employment transitions, and 13 full-time career education transitions.
A snapshot of the class of 2016:
This year’s class consists of 19 men and four women from 13 states across the country, including seven from Connecticut and the other participants traveling from as far as Colorado and Michigan. They represent all branches of the military, having served in the U.S. Marine Corps, Navy, Air Force and Army. This year’s class includes one veteran awarded the Purple Heart, one Legion of Merit, and eight veterans who have been decorated for valor in combat. More than half (52 percent) have master’s degrees, and 73 percent have at least a bachelor’s degree. All have served in Iraq, Afghanistan or other combat areas. Each veteran admitted to the program has had an exemplary military career; many have been decorated for their bravery and accomplishments in service (stated some awards above), and are recognized leaders in their respective areas of expertise.
Many of this year’s students have begun laying the foundation to launch a successful business venture. Regardless of their current stage of planning and launching a business venture, each member of the 2016 class has already demonstrated the drive, creativity and self-discipline needed to succeed in the demanding entrepreneurial world. This year’s class will use the EBV program to increase their skill set and make their dream of successful business ownership a reality. Learn more about the UConn EBV program at UConn EBV.
How impactful are graduates of the national Entrepreneurship Bootcamp for Veterans with Disabilities (EBV) program? The following results speak for themselves …
- 1,393 EBV graduates/aspiring entrepreneurs have been trained
- $288 million (and growing) in revenue has been generated by EBV graduate businesses
- 72% of EBV graduates have started their own businesses; 92% of those are still in business today
- 1 out of every 4 EBV graduate businesses grosses over $100,000/year
- 6.23 – The average number of people employed by an EBV graduate
- EBV graduate businesses currently employ 2,924 people
Michael J. Zacchea
Director, UConn EBV
Director, Center of Excellence for Veteran Entrepreneurship
Institute for Veterans and Military Families at Syracuse University
Re. EBV – national program
About the Entrepreneurship Bootcamp of Veterans with Disabilities (EBV)
The EBV was founded at Syracuse University’s Whitman School of Management in 2007 and is operated under the auspices of the University’s Institute for Veterans and Military Families (IVMF). A national consortium consisting of a network of ten world-class schools offers the EBV nationwide through programs at the Whitman School of Management at Syracuse University; Anderson School of Management at the University of California, Los Angeles; College of Business at Florida State University; Mays Business School at Texas A&M University; Krannert School of Management at Purdue University; School of Business at the University of Connecticut; E.J. Ourso College of Business at Louisiana State University; School of Hotel Administration at Cornell University; Haub School of Business at Saint Joseph’s University; and the Trulaske College of Business at the University of Missouri. Learn more about EBV at IVMF.
About the Institute for Veterans and Military Families (IVMF)
The IVMF is the first interdisciplinary national institute in higher education focused on the social, economic, education and policy issues impacting veterans and their families post-service. Through our focus on veteran-facing programming, research and policy, employment and employer support, and community engagement, the institute provides in-depth analysis of the challenges facing the veteran community, captures best practices and serves as a forum to facilitate new partnerships and strong relationships between the individuals and organizations committed to making a difference for veterans and military families. Learn more about the IVMF at vets.syr.edu.