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May 9, 2013
Larry Lee, the director of Northwest Missouri State University’s Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship, recently completed the National Business Incubation Association (NBIA) Incubator Management Certificate Program.
The educational program provides a comprehensive and practical overview of the tasks and responsibilities of managing business incubators, which are programs that accelerate the successful development of start-up and emerging companies by providing entrepreneurs with resources and services. Launched in 2007, the certificate program is designed to enhance managers’ skills and provide them with opportunities to gain ideas for building stronger relationships with key constituents, providing effective client services, ensuring incubator sustainability and more.
To receive a certificate, incubator managers must complete a total of 24 hours of training that covers a range of topics, including incubator finances, strategic planning, graduation policies and procedures, client selection, and facilities management.
NBIA officials say receiving a certificate is a mark of distinction verifying mastery of incubator governance, services and policies.
“We thought it would be helpful for NBIA to establish a base of knowledge that every incubator manager should know, regardless of the type of incubator they run,” said Tom Strodtbeck, NBIA director of events and international programs. “The certificate program is a way for people to track their progress in gaining that knowledge.”
Business incubation programs, such as Northwest’s Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship, catalyze the process of starting and growing companies by providing entrepreneurs with the expertise, networks and tools they need to make their ventures successful. NBIA estimates that in 2011 alone, North American incubators assisted about 49,000 start-up companies that provided full-time employment for nearly 200,000 workers and generated annual revenue of almost $15 billion.
Northwest’s CIE has two synergistic components: a mixed-use incubator and an academic facility. The incubator is designed to house start-up companies, and the academic facility is programmed to house the nanotechnology baccalaureate degree program. The CIE is a mixed-use incubator with emphasis on technology-based, start-up companies. The facility provides assistance to existing small businesses and encourages development of new small businesses.
The 46,679-square-foot CIE features an incubator with three lab analysis research areas, a shared scientific instrument room, 9,000 square feet of tenant office space, a product distribution center, staff training room, seminar room and staff offices. The academic wing contains more than 16,000 square feet of highly specialized teaching and research labs and offices. For more information about opportunities to accelerate the success of your high-growth business or to use the services of the CIE's contract analysis lab, visit www.nwmissouri.edu/cie/.
The National Business Incubation Association is the world’s leading organization advancing business incubation and entrepreneurship. It provides thousands of professionals with information, education, advocacy and networking resources to bring excellence to the process of assisting early-stage companies. Visit www.nbia.org to learn more.
Mark Hornickel, Communication Manager
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Northwest Missouri State University
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