By Amber Kennedy

Veterans, active-duty service members and their spouses sometimes face challenges entering the civilian workforce, but their combination of adaptability and determination can make them natural entrepreneurs.

In acknowledgement of National Veterans Small Business Week from Nov. 1 to 5, Old Dominion University's Veterans Business Outreach Center will offer two free webinars aiming to help military-affiliated aspiring business owners get started. Both webinars are free to attend but require registration. The webinars include:

Financing & Credit for Your Small Business, 10 a.m. to noon, Nov. 2

Presented by Sabrina Davis of Fulton Bank, this webinar will cover:

  • Eight key factors affecting small business financing
  • Thinking like a banker to craft a successful plan to finance a business
  • The importance of personal and business credit for small businesses and entrepreneurs

Register here to attend.

Franchise and Finance Webinar, 1 to 3 p.m., Nov. 4

Presented by the Veterans' Transition Forum, this webinar will teach:

  • How to acquire a franchise or start an independent business
  • How to select a business model that is right for you; there are more than 3,000 franchise companies in the United States
  • Finding an affordable franchise opportunity; there are hundreds of franchises with a total investment under $150,000
  • Financing opportunities
  • Why franchise companies are recruiting veterans
  • Free services that help start businesses
  • Free one-on-one mentoring opportunities to help investigate franchising

Register here to attend.

The Veterans Business Outreach Center, located at 112 Bank Street in downtown Norfolk, is part of ODU's Institute for Innovation & Entrepreneurship. Funded in part by a cooperative agreement with the U.S. Small Business Administration, the center exists to provide development services to eligible veterans who own or are considering starting a small business.

In addition to the webinars, the Veterans Business Outreach Center offers Boots to Business (B2B), an entrepreneurial education and training program. Boots to Business introduces service members, veterans and spouses to the skills, knowledge and resources needed to launch a business.

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