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Home : News : News
NEWS | March 5, 2014

TAP course helps transitioning military members open small businesses

By Alex Salinas Joint Base San Antonio-Randolph Public Affairs

Transitioning service members with an itch for entrepreneurship can enroll in a free, two-day course offered by the Transition Assistance Program at all three Joint Base San Antonio locations.

The purpose of this course is to give transitioning military members foundational knowledge on opening small businesses.

According to the Boots to Business website,, the class, called "Operation Boots to Business: From Service to Startup," helps participants "identify a business opportunity, draft a business plan, connect with local small business resources and launch their small business."

"Boots to Business is sponsored by the Small Business Administration and its instructors are SBA-approved successful business owners," Ray Ramos, JBSA-Randolph Military and Family Readiness Center community readiness consultant, said. "Discussion topics include taxes, small business loans, business plans, forecasting earnings and pitfalls."

Upon completion, participants have the option to further study in an eight-week online course offered by Syracuse University.

"A lot of people might not follow up with their business ideas because they can be huge risks," Mike Bell, JBSA-Randolph Military and Family Readiness Center community readiness consultant, said. "Taking the first step is usually the hardest part, and Boots to Business is a great way for participants to network with experienced business owners, narrow down their ideas and face some of their (business) nightmares."

Small businesses are important in the marketplace because they account for a majority of jobs.

Sixty-four percent, nearly two-thirds, of new jobs in the United States come from small businesses, according to the University of Texas at San Antonio's Small Business Development Center.

"Fifteen percent of all U.S. business owners are, or were, in the military," Ramos said. "Boots to Business is a testament to the military's impact in business and economics."

The next Boots to Business seminars are March 13 and 14 at JBSA-Fort Sam Houston; July 22 and 23 at JBSA-Randolph; Aug. 26 and 27 at JBSA-Fort Sam Houston; and Oct. 7 and 8 at JBSA-Lackland.

Registration is on a first-come, first-served basis.

To sign up, transitioning service members and their spouses or partners can call 652-5321 for JBSA-Randolph, 221-1213 for JBSA-Fort Sam Houston and 671-3722 for JBSA-Lackland.