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PRESS RELEASE / ANNOUNCEMENTS Thursday, June 13, 2013

Women’s Economic Ventures Self Employment Training SB Spring Graduates

On May 21st a graduation ceremony was held at the Montecito Country Club in honor of 80 new local entrepreneurs (40 from Santa Barbara County) who graduated from the Self Employment Training Course offered by Women’s Economic Ventures’ (WEV) Women’s Business Center.


Womens Economic Ventures

(from left to right front row) Robby Guevara and SET Instructor Masen Yaffee, (second row) Chieko Lopez, Sue Hillyard, Page Berse, Cecilia Villasenor Johnson, Mary Jeanne Ernst, Mindy Nelson, Gregory Hymen, Hilary Kleger, Kaylin Fox, (third row) Joni Berk, Justine Hosseini, Ben Swihart and Lara Carrillo at WEV’s Spring SET graduation prepared to take on the business world.

After 14 weeks of training in finance, marketing, leadership skills, and more, graduates are confident and ready to use the knowledge they have gained to turn their entrepreneurial dreams into reality.

WEV’s latest Self-Employment Training (SET) graduate businesses and business concepts include an upcycling clothing store, custom designed solar electrical systems, refurbished vintage furniture, screen printing clothing, and editing and writing services.

With a robust menu of training, technical assistance, networking services, and access to capital through its Small Business Loan Fund, WEV has helped to create or expand over 2,000 businesses since inception, creating or retaining over 3,000 local jobs and an average of 300 jobs in the community each year.

WEV’s Self-Employment Training course is part of WEV’s continuum of programs that help entrepreneurs start-up, grow, and sustain a business, including business consulting, entrepreneurial coaching, advanced business training, and small business start-up and expansion loans.

WEV’s comprehensive 14 week, 56-hour Self-Employment Training (SET) program is designed for women (all services are open to men) to provide guidance on how to start, operate and expand a business. The program is offered in both English and Spanish, and provides week-by-week training in the most important aspects of organizing, financing, marketing and managing a small business. Topics include personal leadership skills, personal finances, marketing and sales, public relations and advertising, legal and insurance issues, record keeping, cash flow projections, and writing a business plan.

Self-Employment Training courses are offered twice each year, with classes starting in September and February. The class runs for 14 consecutive weeks, one night a week for 3 hours, and includes two full Saturdays. Classes are taught in Santa Barbara, Santa Maria, Camarillo, and Ventura. Interested participants can sign up to attend a free one-hour orientation workshop in the months preceding the next course. The next Santa Barbara orientations take place Thursday, June 13th, 6-7pm and Tuesday, June 25th, 12-1 p.m.. Visit wevonline.org to register or for more information.

WEV’s Spanish Business Training and Small Business Loan Workshops

In collaboration with the Rotary Foundation, WEV is also offering four workshops in Spanish in Ventura that will provide training on the most important aspects of starting and managing a small business. The workshop dates are June 22, 29, July 13 and July 20. The cost is $25 per class and registration is required. For more information or to register, please call (805) 456-2383.

About Women’s Economic Ventures (WEV)

WEV is dedicated to creating an equitable and just society through the economic empowerment of women. Since 1991, WEV has been providing training, technical assistance and microloans to primarily low-income women. WEV offers a continuum of programs to help both women and men start, stabilize and grow small businesses, including the Self-Employment Training (SET) program offered through WEV’s Women’s Business Center. WEV’s service area includes Santa Barbara and Ventura Counties, with offices in Santa Barbara and Ventura. WEV’s Small Business Loan Fund provides start-up and expansion loans of up to $50,000 to pre-bankable microenterprises. For more information, visit WEV’s Web site at http://www.wevonline.org.

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