Newberry Observer

FastTrac: Business School for Entrepreneurs

The Newberry Downtown Development Association (NDDA) is a non-profit organization of business owners, residents and other supporters who believe in its mission to nurture the character, enhance the economic vitality, and provide a shared voice for downtown Newberry.

In carrying out that mission, one of the goals of the NDDA is to create a strong and vibrant economic environment. Coordinated by the NDDA and Newberry College and also sponsored by the City of Newberry, Newberry County Chamber of Commerce and Newberry County, they are bringing a program called FastTrac, a business school for entrepreneurs, to the community.

Often times, business owners spend their days dealing with the most urgent need and solving the largest crisis of the moment, leaving little time to focus on thinking and strategic business planning. FastTrac, a 10-week educational program, empowers entrepreneurs with skills to increase revenue and grow their businesses.

FastTrac will be team-led by Tom Ledbetter, president and CEO of Next Phase Management LLC, and a top-ranked FastTrac facilitator, and Paul Smith, entrepreneurship professor at Newberry College. Guest speakers, scheduled for each session, will contribute by sharing knowledge, expertise, and personal anecdotes.

The 10-week program will meet weekly on Thursdays from September 13 through November 15 from 6:00-9:00 p.m. at Newberry College’s Center for Teacher Education. The participation fee is $150 per business, with a maximum of two people from each business. You may sign up online at facebook.com/newberrydowntowndevelopment or on the Chamber’s website at NewberryCountyChamber.com.

Save the date for the information session scheduled for Thursday, August 9 at 6:00 p.m. at the Newberry Opera House, where you will hear more details about the program and be able to ask additional questions.

As a part of the Chamber’s mission to support economic development efforts, supporting this program is a natural fit. We urge you to consider your business needs and if FastTrac makes sense for you. Both the time and monetary investment is not too great when you consider the knowledge that you can glean from the course. For questions please email Newberrydowntowndevelopment@gmail.com.

We welcome you to visit us on the first floor of Community Hall, located in downtown Newberry at 1209 Caldwell Street, or contact us at 803-276-4274 or chamber@newberrycounty.org.

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Michelle Long

Contributing Columnist

Michelle Long is executive director of the Newberry Chamber of Commerce. Contact her at michelle@newberrycounty.org.