ACEnet is committed to helping to shape and guide the future workforce of the region and is partnering with Hocking College to make new resources available to ACEnet clients. Hocking College students come from our community and are working to develop new skills and abilities to help enrich the region, contributing new ideas and energy. They are eager to learn about the small businesses that shape their communities, and this fall a pilot program is being offered to help connect these students with ACEnet client businesses.

Hocking College’s Business Planning students and Marketing students have been linked with ACEnet to provide business consulting services and marketing advising over the second half of Hocking College’s fall term, beginning in October. The Business Planning students will work with an entrepreneur to learn about their business, understand the ACEnet client’s business model, and provide action items to the entrepreneur to help their business move in the desired direction. The Marketing students from Hocking College will be available to participating ACEnet clients to review the established or practiced marketing plan for the business, providing feedback and adjustments to the strategy to reach a target market, as well as providing new channels to consider exploring. ACEnet staff will guide and coordinate with the Hocking College staff and students over the course of this learning experience to help ensure it is impactful for all participants.

Additionally ACEnet’s Small Business Support Specialist & Trainer, Chris Quolke, has been reviewing open-source textbooks as another resource to leverage in advancing the business competencies of ACEnet clients. OpenStax is a 501(c)(3) that is connected to Rice University and has made available peer-reviewed, openly licensed textbooks that are 100% free to use. Here is a link to the OpenStax Business textbooks. These textbooks will be used in future ACEnet trainings and will be referenced often in the coming months. Hocking College staff recommended exploring Open Source textbooks as a strategy to allow Hocking College students and ACEnet clients to establish a shared vocabulary and understanding of the concepts the students are learning in the classroom.

This opportunity is being made available to ACEnet clients with a limited number of opportunities this term. Chris Quolke (ChrisQ@ACEnetwork.org) is leading up these efforts and if you would like to participate or receive more information about this, please send him an email.