Younger veterans are more likely to be unemployed than pre-9/11 veterans – but a new resource at Sierra College is designed to help them create their next job.
Sierra College’s Small Business Development Center (SBDC), part of the Capital Region group of SBDCs, celebrated its opening on Tuesday. The center will focus on connecting veterans at the college, and in the region, with the help they need to turn their business ideas into reality.
“It’s not easy to start a small business in California … [we’re] helping them to get through that maze of regulations. Also, they may have a great business idea, they might have some really good skills they learned in the military, but our one-on-one business management consultants can really coach them on how to take that idea and how to make them profitable in their business,” SBDC director Scott Leslie said.
The SBDC provides free, one-on-one help with business consultants.
Leslie says the SBDC will work closely with other on-campus resources for veterans, as well student groups. Roughly 700 veterans are enrolled at Sierra College.
U.S. Air Force veteran Jorge Henry said he’s studying business administration at Sierra College with the intention of opening a health-food restaurant in Roseville this spring. With the help of the SBDC, Henry is confident he’ll be able to turn his business into a success.
“Hard work is not something that’s unfamiliar to us. During my almost two years of deployments to Afghanistan, there were no days off – I worked seven days a week, on-call 24-hours a day. So I’m used to putting forth that extra effort – working those days when you’re dog tired. Those days, the job still needs to get done,” Henry said.
Veterans interested in meeting with an SBDC consultant can make an appointment online.