EVB-Dr. Mike Haynie

By Tina M Kapral | Senior Director of  Education and Training
Institute for Veterans and Military Families (IVMF) at Syracuse University

The Entrepreneurship Bootcamp for Veterans with Disabilities (EBV), is a program executed by the Institute for Veterans and Military Families (IVMF) at Syracuse University in cooperative agreement with the US Small Business Administration (SBA).  This year, EBV proudly celebrates its 10-Year Anniversary, and is delivered at ten universities nationwide.  It’s more than 1,300 graduates have revenues totaling over $196 million and hire on average four employees (many of whom are fellow veterans). Of these graduates, 68% of the businesses started are still in operation today.

Although EBV didn’t start that way, it began as a social venture of Dr. J. Michael Haynie, an Air Force veteran of 14 years (1992-2006), who in 2006 joined the Martin J. Whitman School of Management at Syracuse University as a professor of entrepreneurship.  Dr. Haynie knew through his research that veterans were starting businesses at a much higher rate than civilians.  For example, after WWII, over 48% started business, and individuals with a disability were twice as likely to start a businesses ( .  He realized the faculty of Whitman were teaching, training and inspiring entrepreneurs every day, so why not bring this opportunity of business ownership to the community that most deserved to live the American dream — veterans and their families.

Dr. Haynie developed the curriculum to include an online portion, followed by a nine-day residency on campus, with follow up resources and support. He wanted the EBV program to be offered at no cost to post 9/11 service connected disabled veterans with a passion for entrepreneurship. He presented his proposal to the Dean of the Whitman School. Dean Melvin T. Stith, a Vietnam veteran himself, immediately gave Dr. Haynie the approval to launch this program at Syracuse University.  Now came the difficult part — raising the funds needed to support the effort, as well as recruiting veterans to participate. Dr. Haynie found supporters among Whitman alumni, who financially supported EBV; the Whitman faculty, who volunteered to teach; and business students, who helped to execute the program.

The recruitment was more difficult; Dr. Haynie found himself traveling to wounded warrior units to present the program and encountered many challenging naysayers who felt that veterans should not become business owners.  Dr. Haynie would later find research proving the opposite.  He noted this in The Business Case for Hiring a Veteran, Beyond the Clique’, March 2015, stating many veterans possess the same characteristics as those who are high performing entrepreneurs. “Individuals who are drawn to military service, who then have military training and socialization have a common strong self-efficacy, a high need for achievement, are comfortable with autonomy and uncertainty, and make effective decisions in the face of dynamic environments. These attributes, as they are linked to entrepreneurship and an entrepreneurial mindset among military veterans, have been consistently demonstrated in practice.” (

road work

By Debbie Gregory.

The U.S. House of Representatives recently approved H.R. 1694, the Fairness to Veterans for Infrastructure Investment Act. The legislation would include veterans in the Department of Transportation’s Disadvantaged Business Enterprise (DBE) program and would provide parity for the nearly 1 million veterans who are small business owners seeking government contracts. This would level the playing field in federal contracting for veteran-owned businesses by providing veterans access to existing preferences authorized for transportation projects.

Sponsored by Reps. Mike Fitzpatrick (R-Pa.), Cheri Bustos (D-Ill.) and Don Young (R-Alaska), the legislation calls for states that receive federal money for transportation projects to included veteran-owned businesses in their contracting processes. They added that there are 380,000 construction firms that are owned by veterans in the U.S. that could help build projects across the nation.

Currently, only half of the states meet their DBE goals. Adding veteran small businesses to this program would increase the pool of eligible firms at the states’ disposal. For states that already meet their goals, this bill does not affect them or the small business contractors they employ.

“Our veterans are the most highly skilled workforce in America’s history – the product of rigorous training, an iron-clad commitment to teamwork and the remarkable ability to succeed where others might fail,” said Fitzpatrick. He continued. “We need Fairness to Veterans so we are leveraging the unique strengths of veteran entrepreneurs to address the challenges at home.”

“There’s no question that America’s veterans, who have sacrificed so much for the greater good, are able and ready to put their battle tested skills towards improving our nation’s roads, highways, and critical infrastructure projects,” said Young

The legislation now goes on to the Senate for consideration. The text of the bill is available on the website.

SBA Santa Ana District Office

Women Veterans Entrepreneurial Network (WOVEN) |  November 4, 2015  |  8:30 am – 5:00 pm  |  The Delhi Center  |  505 E Central Ave  |  Santa Ana, CA 92707

Whatever stage your business is in, WOVEN will have interactive, informative sessions that will give you concrete steps to move your business forward.

  • Transform your business with your uniqueness
  • Negotiate better deals, find more power, and create win-win results
  • Become a junior expert in your market
  • Find your perfect client or customer

Barbara Carson, Acting Associate Administrator, SBA Office of Veterans Business Development will be the lunchtime keynote speaker for WOVEN.


Registration fees of $25 cover continental
breakfast, lunch and a copy of “Think
Like A Negotiator
” by
Eldonna Lewis Fernandez.

Find more information:

Download a WOVEN flyer and
help spread the word.

Micro-business and self-employment offers
veterans increased opportunities to maximize their strengths and skills to
achieve their financial and career goals. CAMEO is working with the US Small Business Administration to
bring you a special intensive business training as part of Veterans Small
Business Week. The event is geared toward women veterans and military spouses
(but we are inclusive) who want to be their own boss and become a small
business owner.

SBA Connecticut District Office

Veterans graphic


Sign up for Boots to Business ReBoot, an entrepreneurship training program for veterans and their spouses.


Boots to Business REBOOT is a two part training program that provides participants an overview of business ownership as a career vocation, an outline and knowledge on the components of a business plan, a practical exercise in opportunity recognition, and an introduction to available public and private sector resources.

This event is an Introduction to Entrepreneurship. Veterans of all eras are eligible; Active Duty, National Guard and Reserves, and their spouses. This course is instructed by SBA and its partners who are skilled business advisors. Additionally, there will be a panel of business experts to answer questions.

Part two is an eight-week online Foundations of Entrepreneurship course instructed by a consortium of professors and practitioners led by the Institute for Veterans and Military Families at Syracuse University.

Day:     MONDAY
Date:    2 NOVEMBER 2015
Time:    10AM to 4PM
Reservoir Place – Great Room North, 1601 Trapelo Road, Waltham, MA  02451
The Workshop is FREE and Lunch Will be Provided

Seating is limited – RSVP deadline- 18 October

For More Information, call: 413-785-0484
Registration Link: RSVP

Guest Speaker: SBA Administrator Maria Contreras-Sweet


SBA Michigan District Office

Starting or Growing a
Veteran-Owned Business?

Sign up for Boots to Business Reboot, an entrepreneurship training program for
veterans and their spouses. Part one is a one day Introduction to Entrepreneurship
course instructed by SBA resource partners.
This course’s curriculum includes steps for evaluating business
concepts, foundational knowledge required to develop a business plan, and
information on SBA resources available for accessing start-up capital and additional
technical assistance. Part two is a
eight week high touch instructor-led online course called Foundations of
Entrepreneurship which is available to those who complete part one the
Introduction to Entrepreneurship.

Date: Thursday,
October 22, 2015
Time: 8:00 am –
4:00 pm
Location: Grand
Valley State University
The Bicycle Factory
Room 330
201 Front Avenue SW
Grand Rapids, MI 49504

For more information please contact VetBizCentral at

To register:

Seating is limited to the first 50 veterans.

Brought to you locally by:
Small Business Administration
Michigan Small Business Development Center

Cosponsorship Authorization # 15-2110-147. SBA’s participation in this cosponsored activity is not an endorsement of the views, opinions, products or services of any cosponsor or other person or entity. All SBA programs and services are extended to the public on a nondiscriminatory basis.