Military veterans, service members, and their families with entrepreneurial ambitions have the opportunity to learn how to create their own businesses in a free program by the U.S. Small Business Administration.

The Boots to Business Reboot entrepreneurship training program will be held in Chicago from Nov. 7-8 in celebration of National Veterans Small Business Week. The theme for 2016’s NVSBW is “Veteran Entrepreneurs: Success Across Generations.”

Boots to Business Reboot is a national two-step entrepreneurship program from the U.S. Small Business Administration that helps participants unlock the skills, tools and resources necessary to launch and maintain a successful business.

Veterans are at least 45 percent more likely to take the plunge into entrepreneurship than people with no military experience, according to the organization. Veterans own approximately 2.4 million businesses, or 9 percent of all businesses nationwide, generating $1.2 trillion in receipts and employing nearly 5.8 million people. A recent Small Business Administration study of Boots to Business graduates found that they were 79 percent more likely to start a business after completing the course.

The program is open to veterans, service members (including members of the National Guard and Reserve) and military spouses who run a business or are interested in learning about starting a small business. The course lasts two days and begins with an in-person course instructed by a leading entrepreneurship professional, where participants learn the fundamentals of business ownership, including evaluating business concepts, legal and financial practices. Participants will meet local SBA partners who can assist them after the course.

Boots to Business Reboot is offered by the U.S. Small Business Administration through a public-private partnership with the Institute for Veterans and Military Families, the Marcus Foundation and First Data Corporation. After completing the training, participants can register for “Foundations of Entrepreneurship,” an eight-week, online course led by instructors from Syracuse University’s Institute for Veterans and Military Families.

To sign up for the course, interested participants can register at  http://boots2business.org/rebootapply/.

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