University Economic Development Association


Business Growth Mentor & Analysis Program

Award Category: Talent + Place
Project Site: Business Growth Mentor & Analysis Program
Submitted By: Washington State University
Contact: Mistie Josephson , 360.546.9533


Washington State University Vancouver’s Business Growth Mentor & Analysis Program helps small businesses and entrepreneur’s while providing educational opportunities for Carson College of Business students. The program is comprised of a pro-bono student consultancy and a monthly small business forum.

The student consultancy provides analysis and consulting to small businesses and nonprofit organizations to help them improve and grow. At the same time, it provides business students experience working on real business issues and prepares them for the workforce. This innovative curriculum puts every business student into the community to address real-time business needs. Since 2011 more than 970 students have participated and the program has helped 172 organizations. Participating companies grew $6.8 million in new revenues and created 67 full-time jobs.

The monthly forums started in 2014, as a way to bring together businesses that participated in the student consultancy to continue learning and growing. The forum brings our local business community together to collaborate and learn from WSU Vancouver faculty, experts and each other. It is open to the whole business community and over the last two years 86 businesses have attended at least one forum.

The Business Growth MAP has become a flagship program for WSU Vancouver, supporting the land-grant mission of the university. The Carson College of Business is working with businesses, industry and stakeholders. Students and faculty are getting engaged with members of the community. The Business Growth MAP develops Southwest Washington’s future talent, innovative small businesses and community vitality.