[ONLINE] Business Foundations I On-Demand | January 18 – March 14

Event Overview

Business Foundations I On-Demand takes you along the small business journey giving you the necessary tools to move past the idea stage and into ownership. In this course, you will discover the potential of your venture and explore what it takes to start an operation.

This digital course offers the same curriculum as our regular Business Foundations 1 class, with the added convenience of self-paced and self-directed learning alongside a cohort of classmates. On top of the self-paced curriculum, there will be a live instructor available to promote networking with other members of your cohort, facilitate discussion posts, answer questions via email, and provide one 50-minute one-on-one consultation.

Starting a business can be a great way to bring in extra cash or to make a living doing something you love. Mercy Corps Northwest makes it easier to learn the basics of starting and operating a small business through our Business Foundations I class.

How it works

Although the course is self-paced, you will be completing the class with your cohort, and there will be a live instructor to provide additional support. Therefore, you will have 8 weeks to complete the course before losing access and there will be a limit to the number of students who can join the cohort. The timing of the course can be divided into two:

  • January 18 – February 28 (6 weeks): 

This six week period is the “synchronous” component of the course where there will be optional networking and discussion opportunities with the instructor and your cohort. These include weekly discussion posts and zoom meetings led by the instructor. These events will be an opportunity for you to ask any questions you have regarding your business or the class material to your instructor or your other classmates.

  • March 1 – March 14 (2 weeks):

The final two weeks may be used to complete the course material and is reserved for scheduling a 50-minute one-on-one consultation with the instructor. March 14 will be the last day to access the course material.

Topics Covered

The eight-lesson series provides insight, tools and guidance on the following: 

  • Starting a Business: Learn about the different business structures, how to register your business, and how to track your spending. 
  • Identifying your target customer: Understanding market research, your target market and competition, pricing strategy & free market research tools
  • Your UVP: Develop your Unique Value Proposition and competition analysis
  • Modern Marketing: Continue to understand market research, your target market and competition, marketing strategy and tools. 
  • Your Business Expenses + Financing your Business: Learn the importance of the Profit + Loss statement, how to track business expenses, overhead and operational costs, and how to develop a business plan 
  • Registration, Licenses, & Taxes: Learn about the different business structures, how to register your business, and how to track your spending. Here you will find all the tools and knowledge to turn your idea into a registered business. 

By the end of this course, all students should have a better understanding of:

  • How to decide if a business idea will work
  • How to get the word out and attract customers
  • Figuring out how much money you’ll need to start it, and to keep it going from one month to the next
  • The steps for registering your business with the state
  • Learning how you can best use your valuable time and resources
  • Tell a clear and compelling story when people ask, “What do you do?”

Who is this for?

Business Foundations I On-Demand is for anyone with limited time and money who is interested in starting a business.  No prior business experience or education is necessary, and the class is designed to help you determine if you’re ready to start a business.

PLEASE DO NOT REGISTER FOR A TRAINING ACTIVITY IF YOU PLAN ON APPLYING FOR A SCHOLARSHIP – wait until your scholarship application has been approved or denied and then proceed with registration. You will be contacted via phone or email by Mercy Corps Northwest  after we receive your application. Questions? Email [email protected]

Reasonable accommodations for persons with disabilities will be made if requested at least two weeks in advance. Contact [email protected]

REFUND POLICY: Refunds are available up to one week prior to the start of the class. If you are unable to continue attending class we do our best to accommodate your situation. Registration is not complete without payment.

What can you expect?

People who have taken Business Foundations discover that it’s a fun, easy way to learn about business ownership and a great way to find support right here in our entrepreneurial community. Here’s what other aspiring entrepreneurs had to say after completing the class:

“Hearing others and sharing helped give me the confidence I needed to move forward”

“I really liked having a plan–having the combination of the course book, homework, and class was perfect–it made an overwhelming prospect much more manageable. I was able to mull things over and be prepared for class—which always address questions that came up for me–even if I wasn’t the one asking. The whole format and instruction was incredibly valuable”

“This class was so supportive and empowering!”

Funded in part through a Cooperative Agreement with the U.S. Small Business Administration

Event Details

Date & Time:


  • From Mon, Jan 18 2021 to Sun, Mar 14 2021 | Online
    No seats left
ONLINE | Oregon, USA
Oregon, USA

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