Archived Story

Partnership to expand training on Ocracoke

Published 6:22pm Wednesday, June 25, 2014

OCRACOKE — A newly formed regional partnership will offer business owners on Ocracoke Island entrepreneurial resources for success free of charge.

The Outer Banks Chamber of Commerce, Beaufort County Community College and Hyde County Office of Planning and Economic Development are now offering online entrepreneurial training with plans to form and offer a more comprehensive entrepreneurial training program to the businesses of Ocracoke in the future, according to a Hyde County press release.

The program, called HP LIFE Online Entrepreneurship Training, is a global program that offers aspiring entrepreneurs and small business owners valuable business skills, according to the release. The NC Small Business Center Network, in partnership with the National Association for Community College Entrepreneurship (NAACE) will offer the innovative program to NC entrepreneurs and small business owners free of charge.

“We want to recruit entrepreneurs and small business owners that could benefit from online entrepreneurial training,” said Kris Noble, director of Hyde County Office of Planning and Economic Development. “Those who might be in need of training can take advantage of the online entrepreneurial classes BCCC offers.”

Noble said the partnership was a result of her and BCCC’s Small Business Center Director Lentz Stowe discussing the difficulty in reaching those on Ocracoke due to the island’s geography. The idea was set in motion when the Outer Banks Chamber of Commerce contacted Stowe about providing training to businesses on the island.

The OBX Chamber collects major economic data for the region in addition to sponsoring trainings, seminars and business counseling sessions. The Chamber sees the partnership as a way to better serve the needs of the island’s 28 business owners and managers, according to the release.

Noble said they brainstormed about doing some additional training in the fall as well, in which resources would be brought to the island. The self-paced program makes it possible for more aspiring entrepreneurs to participate, according to the release.

“We are starting with the online application and they can do it anytime at their own convenience,” Noble said. “Because owners are so busy this time of year because of tourism, we are going to offer them some in-person, traditional training in the fall.”

From now until the date of the training, the businesses will be surveyed to assess their needs, Noble said. This fall, the partnership will offer social media classes so business owners can learn about sales and advertising using social media, said Noble. In the spring, the partnership hopes to offer a hospitality management course.

“By spring, they (businesses) will have the people they’ve hired on board for the summer and be ready for their peak season,” Noble said. “We are doing this to enhance economic development opportunities in Hyde County.. They are part of our local economy and we want to give them every resource available to help them.”

For more information, contact Kris Cahoon Noble at knoble@hydecountync.gov. To access the free training program, visit https://www.ncsbc.net//DocumentMaster.aspx?doc=1686

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