Microbusiness Development Program

Due to COVID-19, all Microbusiness Development Classes will be conducted virtually via teleconferencing software. For more information, please contact Edward Akinyemi (419-522-1611 Ext 127).

Always wanted to start a business? Need funding to kickstart your idea?

You've always wanted to start your own business, but you don't know where to start. Maybe you're a farmer that wants to start a business to grow and sell food in Mansfield. You might be scared, though, that your idea isn't good enough or that you don't have what it takes to make it a success.

If you are serious about starting your own business and being your own boss then our Microbusiness Development Course is perfect for you. If you successfully complete the course, you will be eligible to apply for a microloan of at least $500!

This program is made possible by the generous support from the Ohio Community Development Corporation Association (OCDCA).

Click here to register for the Microbusiness Development Course!


What is it?

If you want to start your own business, you have to know the fundamentals of entrepreneurship. In our Microbusiness Development Course, we will teach you these lessons and more.

As you're going through the program, we will also help you write a business plan so that you have both the knowledge of how to run your business and a living and breathing document to help you jump-start this. Most importantly though, you will then be eligible to apply for a microloan of at least $500!


In the orientation, we will talk about the fundamentals of starting and running a business. This includes discussion about how, at the core of it, a business is a hypothesis: if you believe that your product solves a customer’s problem you have to verify that this is true by gathering feedback from the customer.

This leads into the second part of the orientation: if the customer tells you that your product doesn’t solve their problem, you need to change it until (s)he tells you that it fixes their problem (i.e. the pivot). In part 3 of the orientation, we'll discuss the time commitment that entrepreneurship requires and the difficulty of juggling life responsibilities with running a business. After the orientation, the contents of the course will be the following (not necessarily in order):

Customer Discovery, Interviews, and Relationships

First Principles

The Lean Startup Method

Local Business Owners


Building a website (GoDaddy)

Compliance: business formation and taxes

Business Certification

Hypothesis Development

Bookkeeping and point-of-sales systems


Quitting your job and balancing entrepreneurship with life

Financial literacy for businesses

Resources in the community & Continued learning


How are we different?

We are an Asset-Based Community Development corporation with years of experience convening and collaborating with constituents in the community. We focus on people's gifts and assets, not their deficits.

We don't work in silos, which means that by connecting with us you also connect with our community partners, the supportive services they offer, and our range of other programs.

Minority Business Assistance Center (MBAC)

The strength of this program comes from how we leverage our partnerships with other organizations. In addition to the incredible support from the Ohio Community Development Corporation Association (OCDCA), a key partner for this program is the Akron Minority Business Assistance Center (MBAC), hosted by the Akron Urban League. NECIC has partnered with the Akron MBAC to bring business counseling services to Richland County. This includes assistance with business certifications like Women Business Enterprise (WBE), Minority Business Enterprise (MBE), Veteran Business Enterprise (VBE), and more. Please click the button below to find out more about these services and opportunities.

Minority Business Assistance Center (MBAC)


Click here to register for the Microbusiness Development Course!



Registration is open for Groups 3 and 4! Register quickly before spots fill up!

Schedule For Group 3

We will repeat the course four times in 2020 in order to give more people the opportunity to participate. The first group was from February 4 through April 14, the second group started May 4 and will end on June 30, the third group will be July 16 through September 2, and the final group will be September through October.

There will be two classes per week, with each class lasting 90 minutes. Exact dates and times for Group 4 have yet to be determined and will depend on the availability of participants (which is why it's so important to register early). The fee to register is $10 and you have to complete the course to be eligible to apply for a microloan. Questions? Please contact Edward Akinyemi at 419-522-1611, extension 127 or at edward@necic-ohio.org, or schedule a meeting on his calendar by clicking here.

Click here to register for the Microbusiness Development Course!