CO.STARTERS Core provides an action-driven, collaborative process with a small and supportive group of like-minded people. Over ten sessions, you'll identify your assumptions about why and how your businesses will work and then talk to customers in order to validate your ideas. This approach enables you to rapidly uncover flaws in your concept and find viable models more quickly. You'll leave the program with a deeper understanding of how to create and/or run a sustainable business, articulate your model, and repeat the process with your next great idea.


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What You Should Expect.


Session 01.

Knowing Yourself: Assumptions, Working Styles, Team Building, Obstacles.


Session 02.

Knowing Your Customer: Customer, Problem, Alternatives, Idea Testing


Session 03.

Finding The Right Solution: Solution, Benefit, Advantage, Starting Small, Brand Identity.


Sessions 04.

Getting the Relationship Right: Marketing & Message; Getting, Keeping & Growing Customers.


Session 05.

Building Blocks: Distribution, Revenue, Typical Offering, Price.


Session 06.

Structures & Systems: Business Structures, Licenses, IP, Hiring.


Session 07.

Discovering the Bottom Line: Startup & Ongoing Needs, Fixed & Variable Costs, Break-Even Point.


Session 08.

Financial Modeling: Break-Even Point, Sales Projections, Cash Flow, Raising Capital.


Session 09.

Planning For Growth: Raising Capital, Growth Plans, Goal Setting, Storytelling.


Session 10.

Celebration Night!

What Participants Gain.

Our programs and tools are designed to help starters:

Mentorship from some of Kern County's top entrepreneurs.

Pitch refinement and the platform to share your business with a large community.

A safe place to share, experiment, fail, and learn together.

Learn how to ask the right questions to better identify and address key issues.

Connect with people and resources who can help you make progress.

Meet with a local photographer to produce professional headshots.

You'll learn the structure of starting and/or growing a business that can be used in future endeavors.

Understand WHY specific business activities matter, HOW they fit together, and WHETHER they are relevant to their situation.

What’s My Commitment?

Here is the inside scoop on what you commit to when you join this program.

01. Ten Sessions

Attend all 10 sessions. More than 2 absences may result in disqualification.

02. Develop

Develop your Business Model Canvas, a strategic tool to manage your business model.

03. Support

Support fellow participants in troubleshooting and challenging their assumptions.

04. Participate

Participate actively in facilitated group discussions. Engage guest speakers, challenge your assumptions and talk to potential customers.

05. Fieldwork

Complete “fieldwork” between sessions to develop your plans.

06. Special Circumstances

If special circumstances may prevent or limit your attendance, please let us know. We try our best to accommodate needs due to transportation, childcare and “day jobs.”

Program Cost

Application Fee: Free Standard Tuition: $200, includes facilitation, guest speakers, materials, and refreshments.

Tuition Assistance: Full or partial assistance available by request and based on financial need for applicants accepted for the program.

Program Dates

CO.STARTERS is offered at various locations in Kern County throughout the year.

The application is always open. If you’d like more information before applying, contact [email protected] to learn more.

Kernville, CA

Every Tuesday night for 10 weeks (4:30 pm - 7:30 pm)

Tehachapi, CA

Every Wednesday night for 10 weeks (4 pm - 7 pm)

Taft, CA

Every Thursday night for 10 weeks (5:30 pm - 8:30 pm)

Shafter, CA

Coming Soon!

Get Involved In CO.STARTERS

Become a Volunteer

Volunteers with business experience and a passion for helping others guide participants through the program.



This is not just any ordinary program. Philanthropic support helps to make it available to everyone.

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