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Source: Allee Feuerman

By: Allee Feuerman

Western Connecticut State University is offering free classes to the public for anyone interested in kick-starting their own business.

The workshop is hosted by the Western Connecticut and Fairfield County chapters of SCORE, the nation’s largest provider of free business mentoring and education. The non-profit organization was created to help small businesses achieve success by supplying owners with the necessary tools to build a strong foundation. In addition to the workshops like the one being held in the North Ballroom on the Westside Campus, SCORE provides personal business mentors and online access to entrepreneurial resources and webinars. 

Every Thursday from 6:00 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. through Oct. 10, SCORE will be introducing new concepts to help small business owners and innovators thrive. The workshops will discuss tips for creating business plans, implementing marketing strategies, acquiring funding and financial planning in their two-and-a-half hour workshops. Each session will have a lineup of expert speakers to help guide attendees towards personal plans for creating their own businesses.

During the opening workshop on Thursday, Sept. 5, SCORE presented guest speaker Diane Winston, who began the discussion about creating a business plan. Winston is a current user of SCORE and has been for many years. She founded her local business, Winston Strategic partners, in 2005 and has been growing her business ever since.

Winston laid out a guide to becoming a successful entrepreneur during her presentation. She asserted her position that, in order to create and maintain a successful business, one must possess five key traits: a secure business idea based on one’s field of education or previous work, a strong work ethic and passion for success, exceptional planning and time management skills, access to financial resources, and support from their family and friends.

Above all, Winston told the prospective entrepreneurs to “do what you want to do, not what someone told you you’d be good at.” She says that passion is the driving force behind achieving success in any small business venture and ended the seminar by encouraging the attendees to pursue their dreams.

The guest speakers and project coordinators provided attendees with plenty of thoughtful insight on taking the steps to create their own businesses. If you or someone you know has any interest in building a new business, you can register for the next workshop at or access information from the first session, at