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The SBA’s “Emerging Leaders Initiative” (ELI) is a new program available in the Lower Rio Grande Valley designed to assist established entrepreneurs in growing their business.

Angela Burton, director of the U.S. Small Business Administration Lower Rio Grande Valley District, backed the launch of SBA’s ELI, a no-cost, intensive entrepreneurship course in the Lower Valley.

Recruitment is ongoing for the 2019 training cohort and will run from mid-April through November. Classes will be held at the UTRGV Center for Innovation and Commercialization in Weslaco.

Eligibility for the program includes annual revenue between $250,000 and $10 million, employing at least one person aside from ownership, and being in business for  at least three years. Program participants will have to attend all 13 workshops and seven mentoring sessions, and complete required course work.

Burton compared the program to a “mini-MBA training” that gives small-business owners the opportunity to “continue their education.”

To apply, go to www.sba.gov/emergingleaders,  email angela.burton@sba.gov, or     call (956) 427-8533 ext. 231.