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Programs

Community Development Programs

Small business development in rural Nevada

While small business development courses have been offered in Nevada’s urban and metropolitan areas (Washoe and Clark counties) for some time, the need for economic development in rural counties is even more critical. University of Nevada Cooperative Extension offered business planning classes to existing and potential small-scale entrepreneurs through a series of interactive video and face-to-face classes.

Issue:

Due to the overall economic downturn in some of Nevada’s rural counties, coupled with the recent drought, economic profitability is especially important. While small business development courses have been offered in Nevada’s urban and metropolitan areas (Washoe and Clark counties) for some time, the need for economic development in rural counties is even more critical.

What Has Been Done:

For the second year, University of Nevada Cooperative Extension offered entrepreneur classes to residents of seven rural counties. Pershing and Lander County Extension Educators partnered with Nevada Microenterprise Initiative and Nevada Job Connect to offer four business planning classes to existing and potential small-scale entrepreneurs through a series of interactive video and face-to-face classes. In the classes, students learned to assess the feasibility of their business ideas and then developed a complete business plan in order to seek outside funding. Participants also received instruction concerning the components of a business plan.

Impact:

Nineteen people participated in the 2005 training. In a course evaluation for the multi-county class, respondents gave the overall course a rating of 4.0 (1=poor, 5=excellent). Statistically significant improvements were shown in 1) knowledge of business plan components 2) market data collection and analysis and 3) knowledge of the financial aspects of starting a business.

As a result of the classes, several businesses opened in rural Nevada. In Hawthorne, Nevada, a floral shop opened. The new owner stated that the class "has been an eye-opening course and I am anxious to get into business."

In Battle Mountain, Nevada, a woman with 25 years of experience making handcrafted tile decorations opened her business for interior designers. She said the classes made her feel more confident that her unique business would work.

At Tonopah, one student is in the process of purchasing a car wash and another is running a clothier business on main street.

Contacts:

Community Development Programs

Programs Program Information

Capacity Building for Healthy Communities

Capacity building strengthens an organization’s ability to fulfill its mission to have a positive impact on communities. Strategic thinking, visioning, action planning, and board development are capacity building activities.

Engaged Leadership Program

Washoe County, Nevada, needed advanced training and skill building for the county’s Community Advisory Board (CAB) members to help them to participate effectively in local government issues that impact their communities. University of Nevada Cooperative Extension developed and implemented an Engaged Leadership program to assist chairpersons and CAB members in their efforts to create and sustain effective boards.

FIND Project

Lander County’s Future Industrial Needs Discovery (FIND) Project is a comprehensive business matching and sustainable development tool. It is a unique combination of processes that has brought together major stakeholders with community input to visualize and plan northern Lander County’s economic future.

Risk Management

University of Nevada Cooperative Extension (UNCE) develops and delivers a comprehensive risk management education program to livestock and forage producers in Nevada.

Small business development in rural Nevada

While small business development courses have been offered in Nevada’s urban and metropolitan areas (Washoe and Clark counties) for some time, the need for economic development in rural counties is even more critical. University of Nevada Cooperative Extension offered business planning classes to existing and potential small-scale entrepreneurs through a series of interactive video and face-to-face classes.

Stronger Economies Together

Stronger Economies Together (SET) is an exciting collaboration launched in 2010 by USDA Rural Development along with the nation’s Regional Rural Development Centers (RRDCs) and their land-grant university partners. The Stronger Economies Together Program (SET) is a strategic planning program designed to help communities in rural America to work together on a regional basis to develop strategic economic development plans based on current and emerging economic strengths in each region.

University Center for Economic Development

Sam Cordes, Emeritus Professor from Purdue University, presented his keys to future success for rural development at the Building a Stronger Nevada Economic development Workshop. Tom Harris discusses these keys to rural economic development with Sam Cordes in the accompanying podcast. You can make comments on this podcast in the comment section if you like.

Unmanned Aerial Systems

Unmanned Aerial Systems (UAS), or drones, may be relatively small, but could have a big impact on Nevada’s economy and natural resources, especially when the necessary pieces and experts come together to do the work and research. Nevada is poised to become a national leader in this industry, and Cooperative Extension is conducting research in the field and helping to bring together the necessary expertise. Unmanned Aircraft Systems have been a significant part of modern military field operations for several years, but recent technological advances are increasing interest in their use for other purposes, such as wildfire hazard assessments, wildfire suppression logistics conducted in real time, wildlife habitat surveys, mineral exploration surveys, vegetation assessments and detailed environmental mapping.