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COLUMBUS COUNTY, NC (WECT) – The Southeastern Community College Small Business Center (SBC) has been named the statewide Center of Excellence by the North Carolina Community College System for its role in helping to start 15 businesses and create or retain 150 jobs last year. The SBC was also selected from among the other centers in southeastern North Carolina to receive the Regional Center of Excellence award. Brenda Orders, director of the SBC, and Beverlee Nance, vice president of workforce and community development, accepted the awards during last Friday’s State Board of Community Colleges meeting in Raleigh.
“Small businesses are the backbone of our economy. By helping local entrepreneurs open and expand their companies, Southeastern’s Small Business Center is helping to grow the economy of Columbus County one job at a time,” said SCC President Dr. Kathy Matlock. “The SBC staff work tirelessly to help local businesses, and they greatly deserve this special recognition.”
The SBC provides confidential, experienced counseling to businesses throughout Columbus County. Available at no charge on an as-needed basis, business counselors act as a sounding board for new ideas and concerns that entrepreneurs and managers encounter. The SBC not only helps entrepreneurs establish their companies, but also ensures that businesses receive the support they need to grow and adapt to the ever changing economy.
In addition to providing business counseling, the SBC hosts approximately 75 free seminars each year on a wide variety of topics. These seminars are attended by approximately 1,000 individuals including entrepreneurs, business managers and employees.
“Under Brenda Orders's leadership, SCC has helped to make dreams become realities for many entrepreneurs in our area,” said Beverlee Nance, SCC vice president of workforce and community development.
“On behalf of the Southeastern Community College Board of Trustees, I commend the Small Business Center for receiving this highest honor,” said Spruell R. Britt, chair of the SCC Board of Trustees. “We have always known the impact that the Small Business Center makes on our local community, and I am thrilled that the staff is being recognized at the state level for their excellent work.”
In his report to the State Board, N.C. Community College System President Dr. Scott Ralls referred to the services provided by SBCs as ones that can make the difference in someone realizing their dream of being self-employed.
“Our SBCs are led by experienced, dedicated professionals who daily work with potential entrepreneurs through counseling, free training programs, business plan development and connections to financing and other resources,” said Ralls. “Our counselors are at the right hand of folks creating jobs in every corner of our state, not just for themselves, but also for thousands of other North Carolinians.”
For more information about the SCC Small Business Center, contact Brenda Orders at (910) 642-7141, ext. 419 or email@example.com.
Pictured at a recent State Board of Community Colleges meeting are, from left, George Millsaps, N.C. Community College System Small Business Center Network director; Scott Daugherty, small business commissioner and executive director of the Small Business Technology Development Center (SBTDC); Scott Ralls, N.C. Community College System president; Beverlee Nance, SCC vice president of workforce and community development; Brenda Orders, SCC SBC director; Hilda Pinnix-Ragland, State Board of Community Colleges chair; Linda Weiner, N.C. Community College System vice president of engagement and strategic innovation.