GGU’s Small Business Program: Alumni Success Stories


Since 1990, small businesses have added over 8 million new jobs while corporate America eliminated 4 million. To promote business ownership, the Edward S. Ageno School of Business and Chevron have partnered to launch the Small Business Program (SBP). The year-long program provides alumni with an opportunity to learn the fundamentals of business operations – free of charge – thanks to Chevron’s generous grant.

While many may have a million dollar idea, the large majority become nothing more than just that – an idea. Melinda Lee, MA ’16, SBP alumna and small business coach, describes launching a small business as an “unnerving endeavor”.  Our program provides check points throughout the year to ensure you are working towards your business goals. It begins with a multi-week workshop that will result in a business plan ready for launch. The duration of the year will utilize that developed plan to guide your future courses of action.

Melinda Lee, BA ’14

“…it was extremely powerful to have others to hold me accountable for my actions toward getting them accomplished.” – Melinda Lee

SBP alumna & founder of Carried Away Carrie Swing, MBA ’01, joined the program to grow her consulting business from a part-time gig to a full-time career. By the end of the year, she earned more than business principles. “I’ve made friends and business connections that have value way beyond what I can get just reading articles in my field or poking around on LinkedIn.”

Now you may be asking yourself if you’re right for the program. Swing describes the ideal participant as “Someone who takes their business [idea] seriously but needs a push, a refresher or a plan of action, together with the motivation and the validation of a group of individuals all in the same boat, is ideal for this program.”

Carrie Swing, MBA ’01

If you are a GGU alumni ready to take the plunge, review the following information.

Program Components

  • 10-week Workshop
  • Mentoring
  • Cohort Meetings

Application Details – Deadline: August 12, 2016

  • Statement of intent
  • Resume
  • Business Plan

Please submit all application documents to before August 12th. Participants will be notified by August 26th.

Mentorship & Speakers

If you are an experienced business owner, share your wisdom with those who can benefit from your real-world life lessons. Email us at to express interest in becoming a speaker or a mentor.

For additional details about the Small Business Program or the spring Small Business Preview Course, please visit,


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