1. Skip to content

Field of Study: Entrepreneurial and Small Business Operations

Introduction

Entrepreneurial and small business operations programs prepare people to manage a small business or franchise.

 

Overview

Entrepreneurial and small business operations programs teach students how to make a business plan and find start-up funds. They also include topics such as:

  • Business administration
  • Enterprise planning and entrepreneurship
  • Small business operations and problems
  • Personnel supervision
  • Marketing
  • Capitalization and investment
  • Taxation
  • Business law and regulations
  • E-commerce

Internships
Many academic programs in this field include an internship so that students can get experience in a small business setting. Internships allow students to develop skills at companies or organizations.

Concentrations
In entrepreneurial and small business administration programs, students may be able to specialize in:

  • Franchise and franchise operations
  • Small business administration

Schools
Many community colleges offer associate degree programs in small business administration. A certificate program usually takes a year of full-time study. An associate degree program usually takes two years to complete.

Colleges and universities also offer bachelor's degrees in entrepreneurial and small business operations. At some colleges students may focus on this topic within a general business management program. A bachelor's degree usually takes about four years of full-time study.

Several universities offer graduate degree in this program. It is also possible to concentrate in entrepreneurial business as part of a Master in Business Administration (MBA) degree. A master's degree typically requires two years of study beyond a bachelor's degree. Doctoral (PhD) degree programs usually require two or more years of study beyond the master's degree.

 

College preparation

You can prepare for this program by taking courses in high school that prepare you for college. This typically includes four years of English, three years of math, three years of social studies, and two years of science. Some colleges also require two years of a second language.

  • Business Math
  • Accounting
  • Introduction to Business
  • Entrepreneurship
  • Business and Applied English
  • Public Speaking

 

Graduate admissions

Admission to graduate programs is competitive. You need a bachelor's degree, good grades, and good test scores. It is possible to study a business specialization even though your undergraduate major is not business-related. But you should complete courses in accounting, economics, statistics, business law, and management information systems.

Prior work experience in the small business world is very helpful, and may be required for MBA programs.

Additional requirements at some schools include:

  • Graduate Management Admissions Test (GMAT)
  • Letters of recommendation
  • Interview

 

Typical course work

An associate degree program typically includes courses in the following subjects:

  • Business Law
  • Business Software Applications
  • Business Writing
  • Developing a Business Plan
  • Entrepreneurial Finance
  • Introduction to Accounting
  • Introduction to Marketing
  • Principles of Economics
  • Psychology
  • Service Management
  • Small Business Management

A bachelor's degree program covers the same subjects, plus more detail in some areas and more liberal arts courses. MBA programs typically cover many of the subjects listed above in the first year. In the second year, you choose subjects in the area where you want to specialize. Often you do an internship between the first and second years. A thesis also may be required.

 

Things to know

Business courses in high school can be useful preparation for a career in small business administration. Your high school transcript needs to show that you are preparing for a demanding college-level program.

Good skills in writing, speaking, and critical thinking are needed for advancement in the business world.

 

Similar fields of study

Careers you may qualify for

Chief Executives
College Business Teachers
General and Operations Managers
Social and Community Service Managers

 

Resources

US Small Business Administration's E-Business Institute
http://www.sba.gov/training/

Schools that offer program

Click on the school name to see a list of their programs related to this field of study.

American Indian OIC (Opportunities Industrialization Center) - Minneapolis, Located in Metro
Bethel University - St. Paul, Located in Metro
Central Lakes College - Brainerd , Located in Northwest
Central Lakes College - Online - Brainerd, Located in Northwest
Central Lakes College - Staples , Located in Northwest
Century College - White Bear Lake, Located in Metro
Century College - Online - White Bear Lake, Located in Metro
Crown College - St. Bonifacius, Located in Metro
Dakota County Technical College - Rosemount, Located in Metro
Dakota County Technical College - Online - Rosemount, Located in Metro
DeVry University - Edina , Located in Metro
Dunwoody College of Technology - Minneapolis, Located in Metro
Fond du Lac Tribal and Community College - Cloquet, Located in Northeast
Fond du Lac Tribal and Community College - Online - Cloquet, Located in Northeast
Hennepin Technical College - Brooklyn Park , Located in Metro
Hennepin Technical College - Eden Prairie , Located in Metro
Hennepin Technical College - Online - Brooklyn Park, Located in Metro
Herzing University - Minneapolis, Located in Metro
Hibbing Community College , Located in Northeast
Hibbing Community College - Online , Located in Northeast
Incubator, Inc. - St. Paul, Located in Metro
Inver Hills Community College - Inver Grove Heights, Located in Metro
Inver Hills Community College - Online - Inver Grove Heights, Located in Metro
Mesabi Range Community and Technical College - Eveleth , Located in Northeast
Mesabi Range Community and Technical College - Online - Eveleth, Located in Northeast
Mesabi Range Community and Technical College - Virginia , Located in Northeast
Minneapolis Community and Technical College , Located in Metro
Minneapolis Community and Technical College - Online , Located in Metro
Minnesota State Community and Technical College - Detroit Lakes , Located in Northwest
Minnesota State Community and Technical College - Fergus Falls , Located in Northwest
Minnesota State Community and Technical College - Moorhead , Located in Northwest
Minnesota State Community and Technical College - Online - Perham, Located in Northwest
Minnesota State Community and Technical College - Wadena , Located in Northwest
Minnesota State University Moorhead , Located in Northwest
Minnesota State University Moorhead - Online , Located in Northwest
Minnesota West Community and Technical College - Canby , Located in Southwest
Minnesota West Community and Technical College - Granite Falls , Located in Southwest
Minnesota West Community and Technical College - Jackson , Located in Southwest
Minnesota West Community and Technical College - Online - Worthington, Located in Southwest
Minnesota West Community and Technical College - Pipestone , Located in Southwest
Minnesota West Community and Technical College - Worthington , Located in Southwest
National American University - Bloomington , Located in Metro
National American University - Brooklyn Center , Located in Metro
National American University - Burnsville , Located in Metro
National American University - Minnetonka , Located in Metro
National American University - Rochester , Located in Southeast
National American University - Roseville , Located in Metro
Normandale Community College - Bloomington, Located in Metro
Normandale Community College - Online - Bloomington, Located in Metro
North Hennepin Community College - Brooklyn Park, Located in
North Hennepin Community College - Online - Brooklyn Park, Located in Metro
Northland Community and Technical College - East Grand Forks , Located in Northwest
Northland Community and Technical College - Online - Perham, Located in Northwest
Northland Community and Technical College - Thief River Falls , Located in Northwest
Northwest Technical College - Bemidji, Located in Northwest
Northwest Technical College - Online - Perham, Located in Northwest
Oak Hills Christian College - Bemidji, Located in Northwest
Pine Technical & Community College - Pine City, Located in Central
Pine Technical & Community College - Online - Pine City, Located in Central
Rasmussen College - Mankato , Located in Southwest
Ridgewater College - Hutchinson , Located in Central
Ridgewater College - Online - Hutchinson, Located in Central
Ridgewater College - Willmar , Located in Central
Riverland Community College - Albert Lea , Located in Southeast
Riverland Community College - Austin , Located in Southeast
Riverland Community College - Online - Austin, Located in Southeast
Riverland Community College - Owatonna , Located in Southeast
Saint Mary's University of Minnesota - Winona , Located in Southeast
Saint Paul College - St. Paul, Located in Metro
Saint Paul College - Online - St. Paul, Located in Metro
South Central College - Faribault - Fairbault, Located in Southeast
South Central College - North Mankato , Located in Southeast
South Central College - Online - North Mankato, Located in Southeast
St. Catherine University - St. Paul , Located in Metro
St. Cloud State University , Located in Central
St. Cloud State University - Online , Located in Central
University of St. Thomas - St. Paul, Located in Metro
Vermilion Community College - Ely, Located in Northeast
Vermilion Community College - Online - Ely, Located in Northeast