Jamestown Regional Entrepreneurship Center Powers Rural Startups
15 May 2023
Supporting regional entrepreneurs through free webinars, individualized technical assistance, and customized training, the Jamestown Regional Entrepreneurship Center (JREC) creates new economic pathways for rural communities in North Dakota. Providing services in the counties of Wells, Foster, Griggs, Stutsman, Barnes, Logan, LaMoure, McIntosh and Dickey, JREC gives free resources to established or blossoming entrepreneurs.
Because startups create diverse, healthy economies, they’re often referred to as “the engine of economic growth.” By collaborating with regional stakeholders, such as the South Central Dakota Regional Council, the Jamestown SCORE, the Idea Center, the ND Small Business Development Center, the ND Women’s Business Center, JREC uses local resources to help startups thrive. Connected to these values on a national level as well, JREC is a member of the startup Champions Network–a national network of entrepreneurial ecosystem builders.
JREC Provides Vital Resources for Aspiring and Established Entrepreneurs
Before JREC was created, organizations, communities, and civic and business officials from across the region held several meetings to decipher what could motivate entrepreneurial endeavors in the region. In an article with North Dakota Compass, JREC Executive Director Katherine Roth states that many in the region saw the Entrepreneurial Center as a vital need for economic development. Roth states, “Stakeholders believed that there was an imperative need for an organization that would foster a culture of entrepreneurship and support the creation of startup communities throughout the region.”
After regional stakeholders decided that a center was needed within the region, JREC became an official entity. Roth states, “The University of Jamestown and the Jamestown Stutsman Development Corporation incorporated this newly founded organization in January, 2018 with the vision of it becoming a premiere catalyst in the region for entrepreneur activity and success.” Since its inception, JREC has created several resources and events for local business owners, including events like the Women’s Business Summit and The Youth Tech & Entrepreneurship event. The center also offers ongoing support to small businesses in the areas of financing, taxes, legal considerations and more.
JREC’s Free Webinars Help Businesses Flourish in the Digital Landscape
While digital marketing is crucial to business ownership, it can also be meticulous and complex. Offering free webinars covering a wide range of topics, JREC makes digital marketing and business operations understandable. For example, on April 26th, JREC will offer a free Google Ads webinar. Similarly, on April 5th, JREC will offer a free “Get Your Business on Google” webinar, which will help attendees create and develop a Google profile. More specifically, the webinar will teach entrepreneurs how to connect with customers through their business profile.
On a different side of business ownership, the center will host an Exporting for Small Businesses webinar on April 19th. Within this webinar, attendees will learn how to establish relationships with manufacturers and suppliers, how to establish payment terms, and how to enter their desired market. In the next few months, the center is also offering virtual webinars on launching a private label, customer acquisition, and more.
JREC Helps Create Economic Prosperity for Rural North Dakota
Roth states that JREC’s mission is to “assist entrepreneurs in facilitating and launching successful products and businesses by igniting the synergies of industry, community, the University of Jamestown, government and other entrepreneur centers statewide.” By connecting entrepreneurs with the community resources they need for their startup to flourish, JREC creates economic prosperity for the communities it serves.
JREC is open to visitors from 8am-5pm, and is located in Room 109 of the Unruh-Sheldon Building in Jamestown. To learn more about how Jamestown can support entrepreneurial activity, see our list of business resources.