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Veteran and Military Family Entrepreneurs Converge on City of Charlotte to Hone Their Business Skills, Grow Their Ventures

February 3, 2016

Alumni from the Entrepreneurship Bootcamp for Veterans with Disabilities (EBV) and Veterans Families (EBV-F) programs persevere in their efforts to live the American dream of business ownership

Hundreds of veteran and military family entrepreneurs will converge on the City of Charlotte [North Carolina] during Super Bowl weekend to engage in business education, training and networking to further hone their entrepreneurial skills and business goals at the 2016 Entrepreneurship Bootcamp for Veterans with Disabilities (EBV) National Training & Alumni Conference, to be held February 5-7, in Charlotte, North Carolina.

The three-day conference, to be held at the Le Méridien Charlotte (555 S McDowell St., Charlotte, NC), is sponsored by First Data, the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA), and the EBV Foundation. Nationally acclaimed speakers and instructors participating in the 2016 EBV National Conference include:

  • Matthew Collier, U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, Senior Advisor
  • Barbara Carson, Associate Administrator, Office of Veterans Business Development, U.S. SBA
  • Brigadier General Gary Profit, U.S. Army (Ret.), Walmart, Senior Director of Military Programs
  • Vivian Greentree, First Data, Senior Vice President, Military and Veteran Affairs
  • Successful Vetrepreneurs: Phillip Folsum, Fulcrum Adventures, and Randy Hetrick, TRX Training

EBV and EBV-F has impacted more than 1,200 veterans and military family members, with 68% of EBV graduates having started their own businesses. More than $196 million in revenue has been generated by EBV graduate businesses, and 92% of those businesses are still in operation today!

The Entrepreneurship Bootcamp for Veterans with Disabilities (EBV) program is a one-of-a-kind initiative that leverages the skills, resources and infrastructure of higher education to offer cutting-edge, experiential training in entrepreneurship and small business management to post-9/11 veterans with service-related disabilities. Founded at Syracuse University in 2007, the program has since expanded to nine additional universities across the U.S., including Texas A&M, Purdue University, UCLA, the University of Connecticut, Louisiana State University, Florida State University, Cornell University, Saint Josephs University, and the University of Missouri -with Syracuse University serving as national host. Assistance from the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA), corporate partners and donors allows post-9/11 veterans and transitioning service members with service-connected disabilities to attend the EBV programs cost-free.

These ten world-class institutions together form the EBV Consortium, which serves as a national educational initiative designed to help veterans with disabilities to make the transition to self-employment, develop professional networks and ultimately start and grow sustainable businesses. The EBV Consortium represents the first major partnership of Americas universities and colleges of business since the end of World War II, formed with the express purpose of serving military veterans and their families.

"Our graduate ranks continue to grow every year and I am excited to be able to offer our alumni with the additional education and networking opportunities that our National Conference provides," says A.J. Florkowski, National Program Manager, EBV & EBV-F Programs, Institute for Veterans and Military Families (IVMF) at Syracuse University. "As our veterans and their families transition from starting their ventures to growing their ventures, it is important that we continue to provide them with the professional advice, expertise, and mentorship that they need to be successful entrepreneurs."

The EBV National Training & Alumni Conference in Charlotte, NC, will also be the site of the 2016 DAniello Family Foundation Business Plan Competition, where ten veteran entrepreneurs will compete for the chance to receive a share of more than $110,000 in available seed funding - thanks to the generosity of the DAniello Family Foundation and Disabled American Veterans (DAV). The ten semifinalists selected will present their small business plans to a panel of independent experts with deep track records in entrepreneurship. Read more at http://ebv.vets.syr.edu/natcon2016/.


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