Wednesday, 20 January 2016 18:46

Louisiana business: Idea Village, BRAC, Jefferson Chamber, JEDCO, technical workshop

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noewJanuary is normally the time for major business organization announcements.  Today's business bits presents Idea Village, Entrepreneur Week, one of the major business events in the country.  Also, the Baton Rouge Chamber announced a "BRAC Micro-Enterprise Credential", a Delta Regional Authority technical assistance workshop and a Jeffferson Parish Chamber-JEDCO speaker's program


From press releases 


New Orleans Entrepreneur Week, presented by IBERIABANK, is a dynamic eight-day business festival that engages New Orleans’ entrepreneurial community in discussion, debate, education, competition, and celebration. This year's festival will take place on Fulton Street in downtown New Orleans from March 11-18, 2016. 

The calendar features106 unique events, fromentrepreneur showcases, to engagingpanels and workshops, toindustry-specific summitsand networkinghappy hours.Click here for the full press release and stay tuned for more exciting updates between now and NOEW.


The Baton Rouge Area Chamber (BRAC) today announced that, in collaboration with Louisiana Career and Technical Education (CTE), the Louisiana Department of Education, and educators and experts across the state, it has created a pioneering, industry-driven Jump Start credential aimed at preparing high school students for careers in small business. The BRAC Micro-Enterprise Credential – designed to be achievable by all Louisiana students – provides students with the knowledge and skills needed to be productive small business employees and, eventually, small business owners. The credential will be piloted this spring and targets Jump Start Career Diploma students who would benefit from basic financial literacy, soft skills development, and appropriate engagement with adults.

“The Micro-Enterprise Credential not only prepares students for employment in a variety of industries upon graduation, but it also equips those who aspire to launch new small business enterprises as entrepreneurs,” said Adam Knapp, president and CEO of BRAC.

The Micro-Enterprise Credential’s three stated objectives are to:

1.    Help students interested in preparing for a career associated with a small business master critical business information and skills that apply to more than one career path, affording them “career insurance” in the event their chosen field doesn’t offer sustainable employment.

2.    Enable students to interact with workplace experts to improve both their workplace “soft skills” and their confidence in interacting professionally with adults.

3.    Help students interested in small business careers graduate on time, prepared to attain entry-level employment and succeed in the workplace.

“Jump Start raises the bar for high school student career preparation across Louisiana.  Because small businesses are the engine of Louisiana’s economy, the Micro-Enterprise Jump Start pathway helps students develop the financial fluency and workplace skills that will make them an asset for any small business employer,” said John White, Louisiana State Superintendent of Education. “The culminating industry credential for this Jump Start pathway is the BRAC Micro-Enterprise Credential.  Attaining this credential proves student have mastered skills and concepts critical to small business success.  Whether these students go to work for a small business or actually become young entrepreneurs, the Micro-Enterprise Credential serves as official recognition that they’ve prepared in high school for adult success."

Through the Micro-Enterprise Credential, students glean real world insights and requisite skills to flourish in careers as small business owners or entrepreneurs. To obtain the credential, students must successfully complete five components:

  • Self-assessment – requires student reflection about personal interests and strengths
  • Self-assessment presentation – requires students to engage with a workplace mentor
  • Micro-enterprise credit applications – requires students to demonstrate basic understanding of credit and capital concepts, and go through a simulated credit application process
  • Company registration – requires students to learn about requirements of forming a new business
  • Credential online test – requires students to demonstrate retention of lessons learned through their coursework and completion of the other credential components. 

Educators can incorporate the materials required to attain the credential into career readiness and entrepreneurship courses as part of workplace internships or virtual workplace experiences. Teachers can also incorporate the curriculum in career and technical education courses, enabling students to earn the credential over time. Yesterday, BRAC staff presented the credential to hundreds of educators from across the state at the Louisiana Jump Start annual conference.

The BRAC Micro-Enterprise Credential was introduced on January 14 at Woodlawn High School, one of five regional high schools piloting the credential in spring 2016.

“The micro-enterprise credential is an exciting new initiative for Woodlawn, and we’re looking forward to being among the first schools to offer this to our students,” said David Wilburn, the educator leading Woodlawn’s credential implementation. “It has been vetted by industry experts, and offers challenging, high-value performance task and conceptual material. Holding this credential proves to potential employers that students have mastered critical skills needed to be a top-performing employee, and also means that our students have the information and insights they need to one day become an entrepreneur that starts his or her own business.”

The BRAC Micro-Enterprise Credential resource center is available at

Students complete a customized selection of courses from a Jump Start graduation pathway and earn industry-valued credentials. Jump Start students graduate capable of attaining high-value, entry-level employment and continuing their education.

More information on Louisiana’s Jump Start Career Diploma is available


Please join the Delta Regional Authority, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services – Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA), and the Louisiana Public Health Institute for a health funding opportunities and technical assistance workshop.  This classroom-style workshop is geared toward public and non-profit community-based organizations, hospitals, health centers, community colleges, and public health officials engaged in healthcare programming in the Delta regions of Louisiana and surrounding states.


Purpose: To provide detailed information on HRSA’s funding opportunities, how to apply and strategies for writing a responsive application. This classroom-style workshop will help increase the awareness of HRSA’s programs and help improve the number of successful healthcare initiatives in the state of Louisiana and neighboring states throughout the Delta region.

Who should attend: Members of the health community including potential HRSA applicants located in the Delta region.  Examples of attendees and applicants who may benefit from this workshop include public and non-profit institutions such as Federally Qualified Health Centers, community colleges, health departments, state offices of rural health, primary care associations, planning and development districts, Area Agencies on Aging, and economic developmentorganizations.

Date: February 2, 2016 | 9:30 AM – 2:30 PM
Registration begins at 9 am

Ashe Cultural Arts Center
1712 Oretha Castle Haley Blvd.
New Orleans, LA  70113

Cost: Attendance is free for participants.  A morning coffee and a box lunch will be provided.

Program includes:

  • Overview of HRSA funding opportunities, with an emphasis on upcoming opportunities.
  • Resources for rural health and healthcare initiatives.
  • Tips on how to develop a great program and write an effective application.

All attendees are asked to RSVP at their earliest convenience, as space is limited.  Please register


 Is your business on a path to success? Do you know where your business is headed in 2016?  Yogi Berra said, "If you don't know where you are going, you might wind up someplace else." Business success starts with clear goals and a plan for how you can achieve them. This is the perfect time of year to strategize for the future and determine where you'd like to wind up at the end of of 2016.  

That's why the latest installment of the Prosper Jefferson seminar series will focus on setting goals to cultivate success in the New Year.  Developed by the Jefferson ParishEconomic Development Commission (JEDCO) and the Jefferson Chamber, Prosper Jefferson provides business owners with information they need to grow and find success in our community. 

This month, two business consultants from the LouisianaSmall BusinessDevelopmentCenter (LSBDC)will cover a variety of topics related to business strategy. You will learn how to set your main business goals for the year.  You will also learn how to apply integrity-based leadership principles to guide your employees and your business to success in the New Year.  

Join us Wednesday, January 27, at the JEDCO Conference Center (701A Churchill Parkway, Avondale, LA 70094) from 9:00 a.m. - 10:30 a.m. Admission is FREE. This event is open to all businesses and entrepreneurs. Please register online in advance

Last modified on Wednesday, 20 January 2016 18:52

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