UMKC Innovation Center partners with the university and the community to spark and sustain entrepreneurial efforts within our region and across the country.

KCSourceLink connects KC entrepreneurs to the right resource at the right time.

MOSourceLink connects Missouri entrepreneurs to the right resource at the right time.

Whiteboard2Boardroom connects entrepreneurs and businesses to technologies available for licensing.

Digital Sandbox KC provides early-stage proof-of-concept support for digital products.

Missouri Small Business & Technology Development Center provides technical assistance to startup and existing businesses.

ScaleUP! Kansas City helps businesses with revenues around $200K scale toward their first $1 million.

Missouri Procurement Technical Assistance Centers helps local businesses obtain government contracts.

KCInvestED helps investors learn more about investing in KC startups.

SourceLink® helps communities nationwide build vibrant and vital entrepreneurial ecosystems.
UMKC Innovation Center
The word

Starting a Business? These 22 Missouri Classes Will Help You Plan, Launch, Succeed

Starting a business can be filled with questions and uncertainty. But MOSourceLink can connect you to the programs that will guide you down the path of success.

No matter your entrepreneurial idea or where you’re located in Missouri, we can help you find low- and no-cost programs and classes. Develop an entrepreneurial mindset, create a business plan and learn the things you don’t even know you don’t know.

Here are upcoming classes from MOSourceLink Resource Partners. And again – they’re either free or at a low cost. You’ve got a network of people who want you to succeed, and a bunch of them are listed right here.

Some of these programs are one-time sessions. Others require a multiweek commitment. And some deadlines are approaching fast. So sign up and get down to business.

Venture Café St. Louis Work in Progress

Who’s it for? Makers and doers in the St. Louis community who want to share their ideas and get feedback.

Each Work in Progress session features four makers. Each person gets three minutes to share, followed by five minutes of Q&A. Makers can use the time to gauge community reactions, find beta testers and consider how their ideas can make money.

When: Thursdays, 5 - 6 p.m.

Where: Online

Cost: Free

Apply here.

Missouri Western Road to Success Entrepreneurship Week (St. Joseph)

Who’s it for? Current business owners and people interested in entrepreneurship.

Workshop topics include creating a marketing plan, social media strategy for small business and increasing sales. Introductions to Canva and QuickBooks are available, too. A conversation with local entrepreneurs and a capstone luncheon are also part of the week’s festivities.

When: Monday, July 12 - Friday, July 16

Where: Missouri Western State University, St. Joseph, Missouri; sessions will be available online after the event

Cost: Free

Apply here.

Missouri SBDC The Basics of Writing a Business Plan (Kansas City)

Who’s it for? Current and aspiring business owners who need to create a business plan but aren’t sure where to start.

Learn what a business plan needs to include and how it can be a useful tool. Participants will get tips and guidelines on formats and writing styles. You’ll re-examine your situation, explore opportunities and discover new ideas thanks to professional business counselors and discussion with fellow students.

When: Tuesday, July 13; Tuesday, Aug. 19; or Tuesday, Sept. 21, 1 - 3 p.m.

Where: Online and Missouri SBDC, Kansas City, Missouri

Cost: $49; scholarships may be available

Apply here for July 13. Apply here for Aug. 19. Apply here for Sept. 21.

Missouri SBDC at UMKC The First Steps to Starting a Business (Kansas City)

Who’s it for? Potential entrepreneurs who want to learn the basics of starting a business.

This class provides an overview of the critical first steps of starting a business. You’ll learn how to access your own business ownership strengths and weaknesses. You’ll also learn about the importance of planning, meeting legal requirements and finding funding.

When: Tuesday, July 13; Tuesday, Aug. 19; or Tuesday, Sept. 21, 9 a.m. - Noon

Where: Online and Missouri SBDC, Kansas City, Missouri

Cost: $49

Apply here for July 13. Apply here for Aug. 19. Apply here for Sept. 21.

Missouri SBDC Starting a Small Business: The First Steps (Online)

Who’s it for? New business owners and budding entrepreneurs who want to learn about target markets and registering their businesses.

This workshop is hosted by the Missouri Southern State University Center for Entrepreneurship in Joplin. Participants will learn how to register their businesses with federal, state and local agencies. The class will also cover the basics of cash flow projections, funding alternatives and identifying customers.

When: Tuesday, July 20, 10:30 - 11:45 a.m. or Thursday, Aug. 26, 1:30 - 2:45 p.m.

Where: Online

Cost: Free

Apply here for July 20. Apply here for Aug. 26.

Howell County Smart Start: Developing a Successful Business (West Plains)

Who’s it for? People who dream of starting a business but don’t know where to begin.

This workshop covers the first steps of starting your own business. Participants will learn how to validate a business idea and how to create a business plan. The session will also teach you how to take control of your finances from the start.

When: Wednesday, July 21, 2 - 4 p.m.

Where: Ozarks Small Business Incubator, West Plains, Missouri

Cost: Free

Apply here.

Missouri SBDC at Missouri Southern State University Business Financials: The Basics (Online)

Who’s it for? Business owners, managers and anyone who wants to learn how to turn financial statements into useful management tools.

This workshop will teach you how to make business decisions with information on income statements and balance sheets. You’ll learn how to calculate several useful ratios and gain the know-how to be confident in your decisions.

When: Thursday, July 22, 10:30 - 11:45 a.m.

Where: Online

Cost: Free

Apply here.

ELEVATIONLAB™ New Venture (Kansas City)

Who’s it for? Budding entrepreneurs who want a realistic perspective on whether or not people want to buy what they want to sell.

This fast-paced, interactive and engaging class lasts five weeks. It offers an accelerated timeline for entrepreneurs to get their businesses started sooner rather than later. Group activities and coaching from professional business counselors help participants develop their business plans. You’ll use FastTrac, GrowthWheel® and other materials.

When: Tuesdays 9 a.m. - 4 p.m., July 27 - Aug. 24 or Oct. 5 – Nov. 2

Where: Online and Missouri SBDC at UMKC, Kansas City, Missouri

Cost: $649; scholarships may be available to take the course for $150

Apply here for July 27 - Aug 24. Apply here for Oct. 5 - Nov. 2.

Texas County Smart Start: Developing a Successful Business (Cabool)

Who’s it for? Potential entrepreneurs who don’t know where to begin.

Hosted by the Ozarks Small Business Incubator, this session covers the first steps for starting your own business. You’ll learn how to validate your business idea, create a business plan and manage your finances. This workshop will guide you through the early stages of launching and get you on the path to business success.

When: Tuesday, July 27, 3 - 5 p.m.

Where: Cabool City Hall, Cabool, Missouri

Cost: Free

Apply here.

SCORE KC Business Planning Tools (Online)

Who’s it for? Entrepreneurs who are just starting out. Seasoned business owners who are adding new offerings or working in an industry that’s changing.

This class helps people define why they want to go into business or why they’re in business. Then, participants identify what customer problems they’re trying to solve. You’ll use the value proposition canvas and business model canvas to bring clarity to business planning. You can use these tools to build a plan for funding, marketing, management or to meet any other business need.

When: Wednesday, July 28, 9 a.m. - Noon

Where: Online

Cost: Free

Apply here.

ELEVATIONLAB™ Entrepreneurial Mindset Training (Kansas City)

Who’s it for? People who want to learn how to be an entrepreneur.

This nine-week class combines classroom and online coursework to teach the eight essentials of an entrepreneurial mindset. You’ll use the business canvas process and learn how to evaluate business opportunities. Learners come away from this course empowered and inspired.

When: Wednesdays 5:30 - 8:30 p.m., Sept. 15 - Nov. 10

Where: Online and Missouri SBDC at UMKC, Kansas City, Missouri

Cost: $649; scholarships may be available to take the course for $150

Apply here.

SCORE KC Simple Steps for Starting Your Business – Basics (Online)

Who’s it for? People who are dreaming of starting their own businesses.

This workshop will teach you how to test your business idea. You’ll also learn what factors determine a startup’s success. The course covers an overview of skill and tools needed to start a business the advantages of owning a business. Participants will also learn the fundamentals of forming and organizing a business, how to market and managing cash flow.

When: Tuesday, Aug. 3, 6 - 8 p.m.

Where: Online

Cost: Free

Apply here.

SCORE KC Financial Prerequisite (Online)

Who’s it for: Anyone who needs an introduction to the financial language of business.

A team of seasoned business professionals will provide an overview of terms and phrases entrepreneurs should know. This session is the first of four finance webinars SCORE KC is hosting Aug. 10 - 11.

When: Tuesday, Aug. 10, 5:30 - 6 p.m.

Where: Online

Cost: Free

Apply here.

SCORE KC Financial Statement Basics (Online)

Who’s it for? Business owners and budding entrepreneurs who need guidance on basic financial terms and concepts.

This workshop will cover profit and loss statements, balance sheets and cash flow statements. You’ll learn where the numbers come from, what they mean and why they’re critical to your success. This is the second of four finance webinars SCORE KC is hosting Aug. 10 - 11.

When: Tuesday, Aug. 10, 6 - 8:30 p.m.

Where: Online

Cost: Free

Apply here.

SCORE KC Sources of Funding (Online)

Who’s it for? Entrepreneurs who need to learn about various business funding options.

In this class, you’ll learn about traditional funding sources like your own savings, bank loans and investors. You’ll also get the lowdown on nontraditional funding sources like equipment leasing, accounts receivable financing, crowd funding and more. This is the third of four finance webinars SCORE KC is hosting Aug. 10 - 11.

When: Wednesday, Aug. 11, 6 - 7:30 p.m.

Where: Online

Cost: Free

Apply here.

SCORE KC Financial Projections (Online)

Who’s it for? Entrepreneurs who want to plan a budget, assess profitability and set benchmarks for financial goals.

This class will cover the SCORE financial projection template. Participants will also learn about the process to create balance sheets, income statements and cash flow statements. This is the fourth of four finance webinars SCORE KC is hosting Aug. 10 - 11.

When: Wednesday, Aug. 11, 7:30 - 9 p.m.

Where: Online

Cost: Free

Apply here.

SCORE KC Legal Basics for Small Business (Online)

Who’s it for? Business owners who need to learn how to comply with federal, state and local laws and diminish their legal risks.

In this workshop, you’ll learn how to select and form a legal entity for your business and how to bring in co-owners. The session will also cover employment law, leasing property, insurance, intellectual property and much more.

When: Wednesday, Aug. 18, 9 a.m. - Noon

Where: Online

Cost: Free

Apply here.

Missouri SBDC at MU Steps to Starting a Small Business (Fulton)

Who’s it for? People who are thinking about starting a business.

This workshop walks participants through 10 steps to start their own businesses. The program includes the challenges of business ownership, how to evaluate a business idea, estimating start-up costs and the importance of market research. Students receive an in-depth reference guide, too.

When: Tuesday, Aug. 24, 4 - 7 p.m.

Where: Callaway Chamber of Commerce, Fulton, Missouri

Cost: Free

Apply here.

North County Small Business Accelerator Retail & Restaurants (St. Louis)

Who’s it for? Owners of retail stores and restaurants in North St. Louis County.

This six-week workshop gives entrepreneurs one-on-one mentorship. The program helps business owners develop strategic direction and learn essential business practices.

When: Aug. 24 - Oct. 8

Where: North St. Louis County

Cost: Free

Apply here.

CET Square1 Boot Camp (St. Louis)

Who’s it for? Early-stage and first-time entrepreneurs in the St. Louis region who are engaged in developing a bioscience, information technology or advanced manufacturing/consumer product enterprise.

This 50-hour program combines formal instruction with hands-on learning, networking and mentoring. Participants will work on deliverables like a business model canvas, financial statements, pitch deck, elevator pitch and planning checklists. At the end of the 10-week class, you’ll have the confidence and skills to succeed.

When: Mondays 5:30 - 8:30 p.m. and Tuesdays 5:30 - 7:30 p.m., Sept. 13 - Nov. 16

Where: St. Louis

Cost: $250; scholarships may be available

Apply here.

ELEVATIONLAB™ Tech Venture (Kansas City)

Who’s it for? Entrepreneurs who are developing a science- or technology-based business.

This nine-week intensive program gives technology and science entrepreneurs a proven framework for growing their ideas. Get ready for critical teachings, lively group discussions and practical experience. You’ll work with business coaches and successful entrepreneurs and build a powerful network.

When: Thursdays 3 - 6 p.m. Sept. 23 - Nov. 18

Where: Online and Missouri SBDC at UMKC, Kansas City, Missouri

Cost: $649; scholarships may be available to take the course for $75

Apply here.

BALSA Grant (St. Louis)

Who’s it for? First-time entrepreneurs in St. Louis.

This competitive program gives finalists a $1,000 cash grant, one-on-one mentoring and a 10-week comprehensive entrepreneur training program. Participants learn about the St. Louis business ecosystem, meet industry experts and develop the skills to build their ventures.

When: Applications due July 24. Learning series begins in October and is typically Thursdays 6 - 8 p.m.

Where: St. Louis

Cost: Free

Apply here.

Help your business grow

Not finding what you’re looking for? No problem! MOSourceLink has your back.

Our Network Navigators can customize a Personal Action Plan to help you reach your business goals. Just tell us where you are and where you want to go. We’ll create a free, individualized plan to meet your needs.

You can also check out our complete calendar of upcoming events. You’ll find networking opportunities, classes, mentoring and more. And our Resource Navigator includes more than 500 organizations across Missouri that can help your business thrive.

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