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Detroit-based nonprofit Build Institute helps people with great ideas for starting companies

Build Institute educates next generation of entrepreneurs

DETROIT – Starting a business might seem like a great idea, but when it comes to execution, where do you begin?

This week in Your Neighborhood, a local nonprofit is helping with just that. You can call it a class of sorts -- business school for those with great ideas for companies they’d like to start but don’t know how. Build Institute is educating the next generation of entrepreneurs.

“We are an idea activator, small business incubator,” said Christianne Malone, of Build Institute. “We really help entrepreneurs and those who are aspiring to be as well really bring those ideas to life and bring those ideas to become new small businesses, new non-profits, new organizations that are affecting the community for the greater good of Detroit.”

Build Institute has been around since 2012 but the Detroit based non-profit's new location is right in the middle of Corktown on Michigan and Trumbull. Inside, rows of desks and chairs where future business owners will begin to bring their ideas to life.

"We're helping to change the narrative of what success is for small businesses," said Christianne. "Over 70% of the grads that come through build are women and 60% of the people who come through the program are people of color."

Getting started is simple. Sign up for the next quarter's classes. Attend class for eight weeks, three hours a day, once a week and develop your business idea. Build Institute helps you launch it from start to finish. They've had quite a few success stories too. The owner of Good Cakes and Bakes got started here.

"She came in after doing a pop up and realized, yes getting some more education on how to own and operate a business here through build institute."

Detroit Vegan Soul's owner attended Build Institute as well as a number of other Detroit eateries and other businesses. For Christianne, watching the businesses go from an idea to a full-fledged company makes her happy.

"It's so exciting actually I was just talking to someone the other day. You feel like a proud parent. You see these students go through your class and they're doing amazing things."

The price for classes is on the honor system, $100-$500 depending on your income. If you can’t afford to pay they are willing to work with you. If you have a business idea and you want to get on board with this non-profit, click here.

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