PRCC veteran finishes entrepreneurship program

November 15, 2011 - 2:34pm -- braswell

A Pearl River Community College student recently completed a unique entrepreneurship program for veterans that he hopes will give him an edge in the business world.Ivory Smith, 30, of the Dixie community attended a nine-day Entrepreneurship Bootcamp for Veterans with Disabilities at the University of Connecticut School of Business.He plans to merge what he learned there with his interest in recreation, specifically yoga, to assist veterans suffering from post traumatic stress disorder.I went to Iraq and Afghanistan and have the diagnosis as well, Smith said. He served one tour with the 155<sup>th</sup> Brigade Combat Team and one with the 20<sup>th</sup> Special Forces, both units of the Mississippi Army National Guard. He served 10 years in the National Guard.Smith, a native of Poplarville, is dual-enrolled at PRCC Forrest County Center and William Carey University. He is pursuing a degree in recreation with a minor in Spanish and working to obtain his certification as a yoga instructor.He learned about the entrepreneurship program from a magazine he flipped through while waiting for a doctor appointment at the VA.According to its website, the EBV is designed to open the door to business ownership for veterans by developing the skills needed to launch and grow a small business and by leveraging available programs and services in a way that furthers entrepreneurial success.They teach you fundamentals of working for yourself, he said. Having a passion and a business are two different things.Smith completed an on-line curriculum before attending the nine-day program and will receive continued assistance from faculty and other experts.

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