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
UMKC Innovation Center
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Get Help Starting Your Business with These KC Classes Led by Experts


Find low- and no-cost programs to set your venture up for success. KCSourceLink’s Resource Partners can connect you with experts right here in Kansas City. Whether you need help with a business model, marketing or financing, these classes can help you create a thriving business.

Some of these programs are one-time sessions, while others require a multiweek commitment. And some deadlines are coming up, so get ready to apply and thrive.

SCORE KC: Simple Steps for Starting Your Business – Basics

Who’s it for? People who are ready to test their business idea and identify key factors that influence startup success.

This class will give you an overview of the skills you need when deciding to start a business. It will cover the advantages and disadvantages of owning a business. You’ll get help determining the most profitable form for your business. And you’ll learn the fundamentals for forming, organizing, marketing and funding your business.

When: Tuesday, Oct. 5, 6 - 8:30 p.m. or Saturday, Nov. 6, 9:30 a.m. - 12 p.m.

Cost: Free

Apply here for Oct. 5. Apply here for Nov. 6.

ELEVATIONLAB™ New Venture

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

This five-week class is fast paced, interactive and engaging. The course offers an accelerated timeline for entrepreneurs to get their businesses started as soon as possible. Group activities and coaching from professional business counselors help participants develop their business plans. Materials include FastTrac, GrowthWheel® and other activities.

When: Tuesdays 9 a.m. - 4 p.m., Oct. 5 - Nov. 2

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

Apply here.

Missouri SBDC at UMKC: Winning Government Contracts: The First Steps

Who’s it for? Entrepreneurs who want to compete for government contracts at the federal, state or local level.

This three-hour seminar covers how to get started with the registrations and certifications needed to compete for government grants. After attending the class, a business can sign up for Missouri Procurement Technical Assistance Center services. These include help identifying bidding opportunities, bid preparation assistance and government procurement counseling.

When: Wednesday, Oct. 6, Wednesday, Nov. 3 or Wednesday, Dec. 1, 9 - 11:30 a.m.

Cost: Free

Apply here for Oct. 6. Apply here for Nov. 3. Apply here for Dec. 1.

SCORE KC: Franchising: Start a Business – Keep Your Day Job!

Who’s it’ for? Anyone interested in starting a business through semi-absentee franchise ownership.

This class will talk about the opportunities with franchises. These include some recession-resistant and/or essential-service models that franchising has to offer.

When: Tuesday, Oct. 12, 9 - 11 a.m.

Cost: Free

Apply here.


Building a Solid Foundation for Opening a Restaurant

Who's it for? For those who dream of opening a restaurant and aren't sure where to start or how to keep up the momentum.

Running a successful restaurant is a challenge, but with a solid plan, the right team and diligence, it’s a dream that is absolutely achievable. Let Xander Winkel from the Ennovation Center walk you through the basics of regulations, marketing and financials. Success doesn't just depend on the taste of your food but the business behind it.

When: Tuesday, Oct. 12, 6 - 7:30 p.m.

Register here.


JCCC / Kansas SBDC: Business Basics in a Day – How to Start a Business

Who’s it for? Entrepreneurs who want to learn what it takes to start a business and apply for a business loan.

This hands-on class will help you determine the feasibility of a business idea and create a lean canvas plan. The course also covers financial projections, marketing, bookkeeping and more. Students hear directly from an attorney, a commercial banker, an accountant and an insurance broker. There’s also a panel discussion with entrepreneurs.

When: Wednesday, Oct. 13, Wednesday, Nov. 17 or Wednesday Dec. 15, 8 a.m. - 4 p.m.

Cost: $75

Apply here for Oct. 13. Apply here for Nov. 17. Apply here for Dec. 15.

Square One Small Business Services by Mid-Continent Public Library: Business Model Canvas

Who’s it for? Entrepreneurs who want to make sure their business plan is solid and then move forward in a meaningful way. This session is ideal for new business owners as well as seasoned pros who want to prevent business slumps.

Participants will gain a better understanding of customer pain points. They’ll also be able to identify opportunities to improve and expand their business ideas. After this webinar, you’ll have a business skill that you can apply to current and future growth projects.

When: Wednesday, Oct. 13, 6 - 7:30 p.m.

Cost: Free

Apply here.

Square One Small Business Services by Mid-Continent Public Library: Business of Food Trucks: 16-Week Start-up Guide

Who’s it for? Anyone who dreams of owning a food truck.

This session will help you figure out if owning a food truck is right for you. Experienced food truckers and entrepreneurial experts will cover a checklist of the ins and outs of starting a food truck. You’ll learn about menu development, food safety, permits and more. A 16-week planning timeline with daily checklists will help you get started on the right foot.

When: Monday, Oct. 18, 6 - 7:30 p.m.

Where: Online

Cost: Free

Apply here.

Missouri SBDC at UMKC: First Steps to Starting a Business

Who’s it for? Budding entrepreneurs who are ready for a critical overview of the first steps starting a business.

This three-hour course is offered a few times in the coming months. Participants learn how to access their strengths and weaknesses and connect with other business owners. They’ll also learn about planning, legal and regulatory requirements and identifying sources of funding.

When: Thursday, Oct. 14, Tuesday, Nov. 16, or Tuesday, Dec. 14, 9 a.m. - 12 p.m.

Cost: $49; scholarships may be available

Apply here for Oct. 14. Apply here for Nov. 16. Apply here for Dec. 14.

Missouri SBDC at UMKC: Basics of Writing a Business Plan

Who’s it for? Business owners and managers who need to know how to create a business plan.

In this class, you’ll learn why business plans are important and what elements and data they should include. Get ready for lots of tips on how a business plan should look and read. You’ll gain a better understanding of how a business plan should function and how to get started.

When: Thursday, Oct. 14, Tuesday, Nov. 16 or Tuesday, Dec. 14, 1 - 3 p.m.

Cost: $49; scholarships may be available

Apply here for Oct. 14. Apply here for Nov. 16. Apply here for Dec. 14.

Square One Small Business Services by Mid-Continent Public Library: Which Social Media Is Right for Your Business?

Who’s it for? Business owners who need insight on which social media platform will best reach their audience.

Learn the differences between the most popular platforms and which ones work best for different types of businesses. You’ll identify the platform(s) where you should focus your energy and know how to move forward.

When: Tuesday, Oct. 19, 6 - 7 p.m.

Cost: Free

Apply here.

SCORE KC: Developing Your Online Presence

Who’s it for? Entrepreneurs who aren’t sure where to start getting their businesses online.

In this webinar, you’ll learn how to get your enterprise online and in the right places. Get ready for step-by-step guidance from online marketing professionals.

When: Wednesday, Oct. 27, 9 a.m. - 12 p.m.

Cost: Free

Apply here.

Square One Small Business Services by Mid-Continent Public Library: Business of Food Trucks: Marketing, Branding & Advertising

Who’s it for? People who own or are interested in owning a food truck.

This session is all about getting the word out about your food truck. You’ll learn about the marketing process and identify your brand map. The class will also cover social media, digital branding and how you can build your skills in these areas.

When: Tuesday, Oct. 26, 6 - 8 p.m.

Where: Online

Cost: Free

Apply here.

SCORE KC: Business Credit

Who’s it for? Business owners who need to set up and build business credit, use that business credit as leverage for investors and prepare for big credit limits.

If you’re paying business expenses out of your own pocket or you’ve signed up for a business credit-building program that hasn’t provided much value, this webinar is for you. You’ll learn how to build and use business credit to your advantage.

When: Thursday, Oct. 28, 6 - 7:30 p.m.

Cost: Free

Apply here.

Missouri SBDC at UMKC: Pitching to Investors

Who’s it for? Founders who are interested in finding investors.

This class will teach you what information you need to prepare before you meet with potential funders. It will also discuss how you can most effectively tell the story of your venture in the language of investors.

When: Thursday, Oct. 28, 4:40 - 7 p.m.

Cost: $49; scholarships may be available

Apply here.

SCORE KC: Developing a Web-Based Business – eCommerce

Who’s it for? Anyone interested in selling products or services online.

Whether you’re interested in a business that only operates online or want to supplement your brick-and-mortar sales, this class is for you. You’ll learn how to make informed decisions and what steps to take to launch your business online.

When: Tuesday, Nov. 2, 6 - 8:30 p.m.

Cost: Free

Apply here.

Missouri SBDC at UMKC: Social Media Road Map for Business

Who’s it for? Entrepreneurs who are new to social media for business.

If you know you need to use social media but don’t know how or why, this course is for you. You’ll learn why social media matters, how to create a weekly plan and what to track. Participants will walk away with ideas, examples and an action plan.

When: Tuesday, Nov. 9, 5:30 - 8:30 p.m.

Cost: $199; scholarships may be available

Apply here.

SCORE KC: Business Concept

Who’s it for? People who want to see if their business idea is viable.

This webinar will provide step-by-step guidance on researching your idea, your market and your competition. By the end of the class, you’ll be able to identify your target customers, describe your products and collect information on the competition that will support your feasibility plan. 

When: Tuesday, Nov. 9, 6 - 8:30 p.m.

Cost: Free

Apply here.

SCORE KC: Strategy/Social Media Marketing

Who’s it for? Business owners who want to learn how to maximize their customer reach.

This session covers strategies for pricing and positioning and the difference between features and benefits. You’ll learn how to outline your marketing strategy, test your message, choose the right sales channel and implement the entire plan – including an online presence.

When: Wednesday, Nov. 10, 6 - 8:30 p.m.

Cost: Free

Apply here.

Missouri SBDC at UMKC: Reading and Understanding Financial Statements

Who’s it for? Business owners who need to know how to turn financial statements into useful management tools.

With this course, you’ll learn how to identify key business information that’s on the income statement and balance sheet. When you leave this class, you’ll know how to calculate ratios and you’ll understand what they mean for your business.

When: Tuesday, Nov. 16, 5:30 - 8:30 p.m.

Cost: $149; scholarships may be available

Apply here.

Square One Small Business Services by Mid-Continent Public Library: Business of Food Trucks: Regulatory Run-down

Who’s it for? People who own or are interested in owning a food truck.

Learn what safety and compliance requirements impact food trucks and how you can meet these obligations. You’ll leave this session with an understanding of why food truck regulations are important and how to get help with your regulatory questions. You’ll also identify your next steps in the compliance game.

When: Tuesday, Nov. 16, 6 - 7:30 p.m.

Where: Online

Cost: Free

Apply here.

Enterprise University: When to Consult with Your Business Attorney

Who’s it for? New entrepreneurs who want to avoid costly legal mistakes.

In this virtual session, attorneys will cover the different legal issues that require a lawyer’s professional assistance. You’ll learn how to determine the legal structure that’s right for your business and what documents you need to make it happen.

When: Wednesday, Nov. 17, 2 - 3:30 p.m.

Cost: Free

Apply here.

SCORE KC: Business Financial Literacy

Who’s it for? New business owners who want to enhance their financial knowledge.

This class will introduce you to financial statements. You’ll see the real impact of raising prices, reducing costs and increasing sales volume.

When: Monday, Nov. 22, 11:30 a.m. - 1 p.m.

Cost: Free

Apply here.

SCORE KC: Accessing Capital in KC – How Entrepreneurs Get Money

Who’s it for? Business owners who are exploring how to fund their ventures.

Do you need an investor? What are your options for financing your new business? This course will cover how Kansas City businesses are funded and how you can get the financial backing to make yours work.

When: Thursday, Dec. 16, 9 - 11 a.m.

Cost: Free

Apply here.

Looking for other opportunities for your business?

KCSourceLink has your back. Our calendar of upcoming events includes trainings, networking opportunities and more. And our Resource Navigator includes more than 200 organizations that can help build your business.

If you need to be pointed in the right direction, our Network Navigators are here for you. Just tell them where you are and what goals you want to reach. They’ll design a free, customized Personal Action Plan just for your business. Individualized for your needs and no cost? That’s a win-win.

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