UHV to offer free program on business certification

July 30, 2011 at 2:30 a.m.

Business owners can soon get some help in competing in the marketplace.

The University of Houston-Victoria Small Business Development Center will conduct a free workshop for business owners who want to learn more about two government programs to help them to better compete in the marketplace.

In cooperation with UHV, Debra Dimando-Werline, a Small Business Administration business development specialist, will host the "Becoming Certified" informational seminar focusing on certification for programs that assist business development and historically underutilized businesses.

"These programs were created to help small and disadvantaged businesses better compete by giving them access to federal and private procurement markets," Dimando-Werline said.

The SBA representative will discuss the Woman-Owned Small Business Federal Contracting Program as well as the Historically Underutilized Business Zones Program, which helps small businesses in urban and rural communities gain preferential access to federal procurement opportunities.

She also will review a program that helps small and disadvantaged businesses.

"There are many historically underutilized business zones in Victoria and other parts of the UHV SBDC's 11-county service area, including Calhoun, Gonzales, Karnes and DeWitt counties," said Jean Smith, UHV SBDC training coordinator. "People who own a small business and want to get into government contracting will find it worth their while to attend this workshop."

The UHV SBDC also will host programs in August by representatives from the U.S. Federal Reserve and the U.S. Consumer Credit Counseling Agency.

"These programs provide eligible firms with greater access to the resources they need to grow and develop their businesses," Dimando-Werline said. "This, in turn, improves their ability to compete on an equal footing with other firms in the mainstream American economy."

The UHV SBDC offers assistance on starting, growing and financing a business; contracting opportunities; and recovering from disaster. It also helps new businesses start and existing businesses expand through a combination of consulting and training in areas like market identification, raising capital and developing a business plan.

Most of its services are free to area small business owners.



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