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Academic & Science ►Entrepreneurship Certificate Program with Externship


Program includes National Certification & an Externship Opportunity



Entrepreneurship

Ever had an idea you thought would make a great business? You’re not alone – some of the best, most successful companies started with an idea just like that coupled with the drive, passion, and expertise of a brave entrepreneur. Starting a successful venture from scratch requires navigating through a number of challenges whether legal or economic considerations and also requires the mastery of certain controlling functions independent of a great idea. Whether faced with accounting, finance, marketing, or management issues, successful entrepreneurs have the initiative and drive to take on all of these unique challenges and get their product or service to market. In this course in Entrepreneurship, students will learn how responsibility and initiative are encouraged as business strategies are conceived and worked through into a promising business plan for a successful venture.


The Entrepreneurship Program

Entrepreneurs are the lifeblood of American business, turning great ideas and services into successful businesses every day. But starting a business and growing it to a successful enterprise requires more than just a good idea – owning your own business requires an adaptive, flexible, and well-rounded skill-set that will ensure you’re prepared to navigate through a multitude of business issues. In short, successful entrepreneurs wear every hat in their business – they’re effective managers and savvy negotiators all paired with an unmatched work ethic. This program pulls together all of the education and skills necessary for success in starting your own business or just cultivating that entrepreneurial spirit necessary to start a new division in your current role working for another company.

Program Objectives

At the conclusion of this program, students will be able to:

  • Create components of a viable business plan
  • Demonstrate management, leadership, and communication skills for running and growing a business
  • Demonstrate techniques for analyzing costs, preparing financial documents, and reporting requirements
  • Design an effective strategy for marketing, customer service, selling, and relationship building
  • Create a plan for researching, securing, and managing the financial aspects of the enterprise
  • Devise a plan for business operations that will ensure the business delivers on its promises to customers
  • Use Microsoft Office

ENTREPRENEURSHIP: WHO EXCELS AND WHAT ARE THE ESSENTIALS?

  • Identify the costs and benefits of becoming an entrepreneur
  • Perform a SWOT (Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, Threats) analysis of a business idea that would meet consumers' needs in the marketplace
  • Describe entrepreneurial attitudes, skills, and traits that lead to success
  • Define terms used in financial analysis and reporting

COMPETENT LEADERSHIP: CHARTING THE ENTRPRENEURIAL ITINERARY

  • Explain the importance of the business plan to being a successful entrepreneur
  • Draft competent leadership components of a business plan
  • Explore issues of research and development in marketing as management initiatives
  • Describe the economics of one unit, cost of goods sold, gross profit, and cost of labor
  • Perform calculations needed for the financial planning of a successful business

WHO WILL BE YOUR CUSTOMERS?

  • Draft customer components of a business plan
  • Apply the 4 Ps (marketing mix) to a business idea
  • Research competition using the Web and other sources
  • Describe the economics of one unit, cost of goods sold, gross profit, and cost of labor
  • Perform calculations needed for the financial planning of a successful business
  • Define aspects of opportunity analysis and market research
  • Describe the long-term benefits of creating brand identity

THE BUSINESS PLAN: DOCUMENTING THE DETAILS

  • Draft detailed components of a business plan
  • Differentiate between marketing and selling
  • Outline an effective sales call or marketing piece
  • Discuss how to handle customer complaints effectively and achieve customer satisfaction

OPERATIONS AND FINANCIAL MANAGEMENT: ACCOUNTING FOR SUCCESS

  • Draft operations and financial management components of a business plan
  • Examine best practices and strategies for running and growing a successful business
  • Perform calculations needed for the financial planning of a successful business
  • Distinguish between variable and fixed costs when starting up and operating a business
  • Explain how the balance sheet, income statement, and cash flow statement are used to make business decisions

THE BUSINESS PLAN: FINANCIAL PROJECTIONS

  • Perform a SWOT (Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, Threats) analysis of a business idea that would meet consumers' needs in the marketplace
  • Draft financial projections components of a business plan
  • Describe ways to manage and forecast cash flow effectively
  • Explain how the balance sheet, income statement, and cash flow statement are used to make business decisions

FOCUSING ON FINANCIAL STRATEGIES

  • Draft financial strategies components of a business plan
  • Perform calculations needed for the financial planning of a successful business
  • Explain how using calculations such as simple interest, compound interest, and return on investment can help in making wise choices about financing sources
  • Identify funding sources from start-up costs to long-term financing for the business
  • Compare and contrast sources of business financing

THE BUSINESS PLAN: MEASUREMENT AND REVIEW

  • Draft measurement components of a business plan
  • Describe intellectual property and the federal/state laws that protect these assets
  • Examine best practices and strategies for running and growing a successful business

WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW TO GO AND GROW

  • Draft growth components of a business plan
  • Explain the significance of business operations
  • Discuss ways to use technology such as a website to benefit business operations
  • Determine appropriate software, hardware, and networking solutions

LEADERSHIP: SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY AND BUSINESS ETHICS

  • Draft leadership components of a business plan
  • Examine best practices and strategies for running and growing a successful business
  • Explain what makes an effective and ethical leader and why

BRANDING, FRANCHISING, AND HARVESTING

  • Describe the long-term benefits of creating brand identity
  • Explore opportunities for business growth
  • Describe benefits of licensing and franchising
  • Describe methods of valuing and harvesting a business

READY FOR TOMORROW? ENTREPRENEURS, START YOUR ENGINES!

  • Draft these components of a business plan
  • Identify the costs and benefits of becoming an entrepreneur

Note: This program can be completed in 6 months. However, students will have online access to this program for a 24-month period.

Education and National Certifications

  • Students should have or be pursuing a high school diploma or GED.
  • There are no state approval and/or state requirements associated with this program.
  • There are several National Certification exams that are available to students who successfully complete this program:
    • Microsoft Office Specialist (MOS) Certification Exam.

National Certification

Upon successful completion of this Auburn University program, students would be eligible to sit for the Microsoft Office Specialist (MOS) exam. Although there are no state approval, state registration or other state requirements for this program, students who complete this program at Auburn University will be prepared and are eligible to sit for this national certification exam. Students who complete this program are encouraged to complete the externship option with their program. Students who complete this program can and do sit for the MOS national certification exams and are qualified, eligible and prepared to do so. Auburn University works with each student to complete the exam application and register the student to take their national certification exam.


Externship / Hands on Training / Practicum

Although not a requirement, once students complete the program, they have the ability to participate in an externship and/or hands on practicum so as to practice the skills necessary to perform the job requirements of a professional in this field. Students will be assisted with completing a resume and/or other requirements necessary to work in this field. All students who complete this program are eligible to participate in an externship and will be placed with a participating organization near their location. Auburn University works with national organizations and has the ability to place students in externship opportunities nationwide.