Yesterday the Indiana Small Business Development Center (Indiana SBDC) announced a new partnership with the Indiana University Kelley School of Business to support the long-term economic recovery of Hoosier small businesses and entrepreneurs. Through a new program, eligible companies may apply for no-cost assistance to help establish or increase their online presence through website development, e-commerce support and other digital tools and services. The Indiana SBDC and Kelley launched Project HOPE to support Indiana small businesses negatively affected by COVID-19. Under the program, Kelley students and recent graduates are offered paid internships to assist eligible companies in expanding their online presence, solving technology issues or providing new digital capabilities. The projects, which include creating or modifying websites, building e-commerce platforms, improving cybersecurity frameworks, migrating data, and more, are overseen by faculty members and completed within two weeks.
-To be eligible, Indiana small businesses must meet the following criteria:
-Be an Indiana SBDC client,
-Have been in business as of February 15, 2020, and
-Be able to demonstrate a negative impact from COVID-19.
To date, more than 75 student interns have participated in Project HOPE, providing more than 8,000 hours of direct technical support to 97 small businesses in 28 counties. Along with these services, student interns provide training and education to enable small businesses to operate the new technology or tool following the conclusion of the project. All work is conducted virtually to ensure the health and safety of Hoosiers. Indiana companies are encouraged to submit applications online.