Virtual community for entrepreneurs here to stay
Launched in response to pandemic, Vermont Startup Collective grows membership, relevance as company reopens
BURLINGTON Vt. (May 28, 2021) – Since launching in October 2020, the Vermont Startup Collective has experienced unexpected engagement and rapid growth. With a focused virtual space to advance business ideas, learn new skills, and connect with the community, entrepreneurs are able to get the support they need, when they need it most. With over 750 members today, the online community is emerging as a center of gravity for Vermont entrepreneurs, startups, remote workers, small business owners, freelancers, investors and mentors. . So far 89% of members return regularly and over 50,000 member-to-member interactions have taken place so far. Membership is free and the community is organized by the Vermont Center for Emerging Technologies (VCET).
“The Startup Collective is the perfect blend of networking, resources, compassion, ‘how’ content ‘, being there, trying that’ experience, problem solving collaboratively, facing reality AND passionate dreamers, ”said Molly Yanus, founder of Echo Consulting. “It has personally helped me make critical connections and gave me the confidence to engage in an important pivot for my business during a crazy year. I am so impressed and grateful for the amazing teams who have come together to make this community a reality for Vermont.
Born out of demands from innovators, consultants and business leaders looking to connect during Covid-19, the mobile / desktop platform surrounds active and aspiring entrepreneurs and professionals with constructive guidance from counselors and mentors, stimulating conversations with their peers, and critical tools and resources. to start and evolve. Supported by more than 40 organizations in Vermont, Collective members now have direct access to countless entrepreneurship support organizations and experts from across the state, all in one place.
“The Vermont Startup Collective has put the wisdom, experience and networks of Vermont entrepreneurs at my fingertips whenever I need it. All I have to do is ask a question and I know I will have a community of knowledgeable people ready and willing to help me. Honestly, I feel so much more confident that I will achieve my goals knowing that my community is there to support me, ”said Skylar Bagdon, a student entrepreneur at the University of Vermont.
Thanks in large part to the generosity of the Vermont Community Foundation, which provided a supportive grant of $ 70,000, the Collective is free and designed to be accessible and inclusive for all, ensuring that ALL entrepreneurs, workers at distance and the participants in the innovation have access to it. the support they need. Vermonters are connecting, helping and contributing to each other like never before.
“What started out as a ‘seed idea’ to be tested internally has now grown into an open, authentic and empowering network for Vermont professionals, students and entrepreneurs,” said David Bradbury, President of VCET . “We are excited to see the real issues of business owners that their peers, investors and experts respond to on a daily basis. The momentum is really encouraging. “
Members can join groups organized by topic, such as Legal, Technical or Design & Branding, and join relevant “circles” such as technical founders or young professionals. New to the collective are free, self-guided courses such as Creating a Family Workplace, Introduction to SEO, and Investing in Your Community. New ideas for topics, circles and courses can be requested by members at any time.
The website and mobile app have been especially valuable for entrepreneurs new to Vermont who may not yet know where to turn, first-time business owners looking for participatory information, and businesses to scaling such as Widewail, Faraday, Greensea Systems, Lift Learning, GPMS International and Beta. Technologies seeking to hire multiple positions.
For more information or to join the Collective, please visit www.vermontstartupcollective.com.
VTDigger press releases are provided by the submitting organizations and may include mention of VTDigger staff, family and directors.
Use our self-service press release portal to promote it on VTDigger and reach our entire web and email readership.