we are open sign on door of small business

Small Business Center

Confidential Business Counseling

Small Business Centers provide local, experienced counselors as advisers for new and existing businesses. Available on an as-needed basis, this confidential service acts as a sounding board for new ideas and/or concerns you may have about your business. Our professional staff will help you find solutions to your challenging business questions. No question is too simple or complicated. There is no charge for this service.

CLICK HERE for a list of classes available in both English and Spanish. For services or questions in Spanish, please call Marilyn Graham at 910-755-8561.

Co-Working Space

Do you dream of starting your own business and find yourself at the kitchen table pulling your hair trying to figure out where to start? If you answered YES, you may need the assistance of the Small Business Center and membership with CINErG (Center for Innovative Networking & Entrepreneur Groups). This space will provide a physical location to independent workers, entrepreneurial start-ups, or virtual workers who desire a sense of community and synergy. In addition to meeting space, networking, and nurturing emerging businesses, here at Brunswick Community College’s Co-working Space you can get basic business necessities such as Wi-Fi access, printing, and copying, flexible space, support, etc.

To apply, simply complete the membership application and return to April Scott at [email protected]. Please indicate which membership package you prefer.

Once we review and approve your application someone from the Small Business Center will contact you. Please remember this space is for those that are interested in starting a business or are in the stages of establishing a business.

Business & Industry Incubator

Brunswick Community College’s Business and Industry Incubator is designed to accelerate the development and success of entrepreneurial businesses through an array of support and resources. Whether your business is new or expanding, now’s the time to get the help, and great location, you need to succeed.

The incubators can occupy three start-up manufacturing businesses. The team is always accepting applications and will notify you as soon as space is available.

Small Business Center’s April Scott on “Dive In”

Small Business Education Resources

Individual Business Counseling Sessions

Seminars and Workshops

Upcoming Webinars

Womenpreneur Empowerment

2023 Summit a Huge Success

National Entrepreneurs Day came early at BCC as the Small Business Center hosted the second annual Womenpreneur Empowerment Summit on Nov. 13 & 14. Women representing new and existing small businesses traveled from as far as Alabama to soak up hands-on, interactive learning. Attendees enjoyed two days of networking, workshop sessions, guest speakers, and leadership and team-building activities before heading home to put their new skills to work.

Thank you to BCC Small Business Center Director April Scott for designing and leading the Summit. “North Carolina is number two in the nation for female-owned businesses,” said Scott. “We want to help grow that number by showcasing these fantastic women and encouraging others to join them.”

The BCC Small Business Center provides free, confidential business counseling and monthly workshops and webinars. It also offers affordable, fully equipped co-working space and three manufacturing bays for business owners to set up shop and grow. Contact Scott at [email protected] or (910) 755-7306.

Small Business Center Spotlights

Employees and company van from Grab Bars, one of the Small Business Spotlights on our SBC page

Same Day Grab Bars

We are thrilled to introduce Same Day Grab Bars of Coastal North and South Carolinas, a dedicated team of six safety-conscious friends passionate about giving back to our wonderful community. After discovering the impressive work of Same Day Grab Bars® in Florida, they knew this was the perfect fit for their mission.

Same Day Grab Bars is your reliable partner for installing safety grab bars in homes and businesses. Whether you’re facing an urgent healthcare situation, have a family member with mobility challenges, or are planning to age in place, they are equipped to assist you. A simple phone call is all it takes to schedule an appointment, and for more details, visit their website, SameDayGrabBars.com.

One of their skilled installers will visit your home or business, attentively listen to your safety concerns, conduct an ADA review of the installation site, and install the grab bars of your choice on the very same day. There is no need to endure long waits or juggle multiple appointments. What’s more, all Moen products and installations come with a lifetime guarantee, ensuring your peace of mind.

Co-owner Sheryl Craun shared, “Brunswick County Community College’s Small Business Center has been an invaluable resource for us as franchise owners. We’ve benefited from online programs like Creating an Operations Plan, How to Start a Small Business the Right Way, and Marketing for Success. The confidential one-on-one business counseling also provided us with a wealth of information and resources. The guidance, insights, and introductions to the local Chambers of Commerce have been indispensable.”

Ready to make your home or business safer? Call (910) 712-8765 or (800) 215-7560, or visit SameDayGrabBars.com. Let’s discuss how our grab bars can bring peace of mind to you and your loved ones. Remember: One Call Stops the Fall®

kj VintageFinds

kj VintageFinds is thrilled to announce the grand opening of their newly established family-owned store featuring refurbished furniture and home décor! As a fresh addition to the community, they are eager to share their passion for quality craftsmanship and sustainable living with the community.

We invite you to enter their welcoming space and discover a curated collection of refurbished furniture and home décor pieces that blend charm with eco-consciousness. They have thoughtfully restored each item, breathing new life into its design and history.

Step into the kj VintageFinds showroom, a space brimming with inspiration. Whether you’re seeking a statement piece or unique accents, their carefully curated displays will ignite your imagination. Stay a little longer and immerse yourself in an in-person painting class, a unique opportunity to unleash your creativity.

kj VintageFinds believes in making quality accessible. Their goal is simple: to provide you with pieces and services at an affordable price in a friendly and comfortable environment. They want to help you create a home that reflects your unique style and values. They can’t wait to welcome you and share the joy of refurbished treasures with our community.

“We are thankful to April Scott and the Small Business Center,” said Jenni Carsrud, co-owner of kj VintageFinds. “We met with April to discuss starting a business together. She walked us through the steps, answered our many questions, and continued to support us after our meeting. After finding a location for our shop, we followed April’s checklist, which made the process fairly smooth.”

Visit the kj VintageFinds team Kim, Jenni, and Dustin at 10138 Beach Dr. #6 Calabash, NC 28467. You can follow them on Facebook to see new items or stop by the store Tuesday – Friday, 11-5, or Saturday, 10-5. For questions about products or classes, email [email protected].

Katrina Creech MSW LCSW

Friends would say Katrina Creech has been a therapist her entire life; however, she became an “official” therapist in 2016. Personal life experience led her to social work, and she cannot imagine doing anything else. She loves walking alongside people, hearing their stories, nudging them to explore how those stories can contribute to them experiencing life to the fullest, and bearing witness to the positive changes therapy can provide for them.

Whether you’re navigating anxiety, depression, trauma, relationship challenges, or life transitions, her expertise focuses on helping you find your path to resilience and well-being. Katrina believes in collaborative and open communication, empowering you to participate actively in your healing process. This approach fosters a sense of control and ownership over your mental health journey. She understands the demands of a busy life. She offers flexible scheduling to include early mornings, evenings, and weekends through telehealth, ensuring you can access support when it suits you best.

Katrina offers a compassionate and personalized therapy experience crafted to guide individuals on their unique journey toward mental and emotional well-being. Katrina provides a safe and empathetic space for individuals seeking personal growth and healing. Katrina understands that each person’s journey is unique. As a licensed and experienced therapist, she utilizes evidence-based practices such as cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT), dialectical behavioral therapy (DBT), and eye movement desensitization reprocessing (EMDR) to personalize your treatment and address your specific needs and goals.

In the collaborative journey with clients, she has witnessed transformative changes. Clients report increased self-awareness, enhanced coping skills, and an overall improvement in their well-being. These success stories illustrate the positive impact that personalized therapeutic support can have on individual lives.

Katrina is a National Association of Social Workers (NASW) member and volunteers in several capacities in her community. She aims to contribute positively to the community’s mental health landscape.

She looks forward to expanding her services to reach more individuals, making mental health support accessible and tailored to each person’s unique needs. She accepts Aetna, Cigna, Optimum, Oscar Health, Oxford, United Healthcare, and self-pay. You can reach her at:

Katrina Creech, MSW LCSW

(910) 225-4466

[email protected]

Katrina Creech, LCSW LICSW – Alma (helloalma.com)

Primal Point Health

Amanda Ward is a Certified Health Coach in Leland who provides support, accountability, and resources for those seeking help with their health challenges, such as weight loss, digestion issues, metabolic syndrome, and hormonal imbalances. She has been practicing since 2021.

Before then, Amanda suffered from mysterious gut and autoimmune issues for years despite being an obsessively healthy person. She was able to heal after learning about the dangers of dietary oxalates. She decided to pursue a health coaching certification to help prevent others from unnecessarily suffering as she did.

Amanda started her health coaching business, Primal Point Health, in 2022 to help others transform their health and address habits that don’t serve them. She built her very own program around ancestral health and plant toxin awareness. While she is passionate about plant toxin education and promoting the benefits of a primal lifestyle, she also wants to help her clients understand the power of balance. And that good nutrition isn’t about perfection – it’s about living a good, whole, and meaningful life, too. 

Now, she is an agent of change for her clients, helping them heal from inflammation and bad relationships with food, filter the endless barrage of overwhelming health information, and get the results they dream of and deserve. Amanda has a personal, collaborative relationship with her clients, and that’s the secret sauce to her program. It’s client-centered, not coach-centered, so it’s never one size fits all. Her program focuses on nutrient density, never calorie restriction, because nourishment and abundance can address a ton of issues, from cravings and binging to fertility to chronic disease.

Her program is also holistic. If you go to her for weight loss, she doesn’t only focus on nutrition. If you come to her for fitness, she focuses on more than physical activity. Instead, she looks at your life as a big picture.

It’s Amanda’s mission to help clients break free from what’s holding them back, live fully, and feel their best. She loves giving practical tips, easy recipes, and supportive strategies to show that honest, healthy living is doable, so sign up for her newsletter at https://www.primalpointhealth.com/newsletter

Or, if you’d like to contact Amanda for a free consultation, go to her website, PrimalPointHealth.com.

Deb Church

Deb Church Coaching

business and corporate law, she was fortunate to stay at home with her two boys when they were young. During her time a domestic engineer, she became a volunteer extraordinaire, community advocate, blogger, and wrote an adult humor book. But life wasn’t always easy. In the span of a decade, she faced a myriad of struggles which really knocked her off course. It was one thing after another. When her 30-year marriage ended in divorce, she was forced to reassess life as she knew it and started life coach training. After navigating life’s craziest twists, turns, and detours, it is her mission to share the life lessons she has learned along the way with others who find themselves faced with difficult life changes.

During coaching she provides clients a roadmap to get their life back on track. They work together to focus on reclaiming self-confidence using positive affirmations, appreciating the goodness in life by incorporating a gratitude practice, and removing distractions to organize priorities. Navigating this roadmap together provides clients clarity. In time, clients not only survive the challenges of change, but actually thrive.

“I saw a new networking opportunity advertised for the Women’s Networking Collective. As I was reading the material, I noticed that April Scott, Director of the Small Business Center was the keynote speaker for the luncheon. I knew immediately I had to attend. April and I worked together many years ago in the nonprofit arena and it was a joy to reconnect. She’s a powerhouse!”

To learn more visit her website at Deb Church Coaching.

Dave’s Small Equipment Repair

Dave and his wife Dawn had discussed starting a small equipment repair business many times over the years, and with his job ending, they felt it was a now or never moment. Dave recognized a need in Leland for a local small equipment repair company and decided to seize the opportunity.

Despite their concerns about taking on additional bills and whether or not the demand for the mobile service they offered was great enough, Dave’s Small Equipment Repair was born. Fortunately, the response was overwhelmingly positive! They found many homeowners needed help transporting their equipment to a shop, incurring costs as high as $80 per trip. Even customers that can transport their equipment are finding the mobile service convenient. It saves them time which is something we all could use more of.

The mobile part of Dave’s business appeals to homeowners and smaller companies that rely heavily on their equipment always being in working order. No equipment means no income. Plus, Dave’s comes to them, saving time and quickening repairs. Many companies are taking advantage of Dave’s maintenance programs designed to service equipment regularly to prevent breakdowns. 

“With the help of April at the Small Business Center, we learned what we needed to do to get our business started and officially opened in March,” said Dave. “We just received our 12th 5-star review on Google. When our customers are happy, so are we. We’re proud of our accomplishments and look forward to continued success.”  

If you have equipment in your garage that needs repairs, call or text Dave at (910) 782-2752 or email him at [email protected]. You can also visit his website!

Blue Basil Garden Coaching

Business owner Stefanie Brown established Blue Basil Garden Coaching in April 2022 with the mission of living in a more self-sufficient world. She witnessed first-hand the dependence on processed food shipped across the country and sometimes across an ocean to feed our families and believed there was a better way. As an experienced vegetable gardener, she has seen the joy of raising her children in a gardening household.

Stefanie works as a garden coach to inform, inspire, and educate the confused and uncertain gardener. She provides a resource and encouragement to those she works with, helping them grow their food using the methods she has discovered over the last 19 years. Blue Basil Garden Coaching offers group classes, private gardening lessons, design and installation of backyard vegetable and herb gardens. It doesn’t matter if clients are working with a small patio or a large rural lot; they are finding success harvesting more than they ever thought possible from their gardens.

To learn more about Blue Basil Garden Coaching, check out their website or email [email protected]. You can see some of their work on Facebook or Instagram.

Ocean Fired Studio Pottery

Holly Scott, the owner of Ocean Fired Studio Pottery, had created beautiful pottery for several years. In 2020 she decided it was time to share her work more broadly. She set out to learn how to start a business and market to the community.

“Small Business Center Director April Scott steered me in the right direction and was enormously helpful,” said Holly. “I wanted to learn what was most instrumental when starting Ocean Fired Studio Pottery before opening the doors to my new shop, not afterward. I got suggestions for an excellent web designer and other tips on promoting my business using Facebook and Instagram.”

Holly did the work and began selling at local markets and online. She has since expanded her business by opening a studio and shop at 4309 Mineola Ave. in Little River, SC. While you can still find Holly at several festivals and artisan markets, you can visit and make purchases at the shop, Tuesday-Friday, 10:00 AM-4:00 PM. You can also see her work on Facebook and Instagram. Check out this fantastic article from the Summer 2023 edition of South Brunswick Magazine!

Expand the Brand

Expand The Brand is a Business and Social Media Agency created with the client in mind. Working with start-up companies and managing social media for a Fortune 15 company for 8+ years Neiko Hannah, owner knew it was time to branch out and give his expertise to as many businesses as possible. Based in Leland, NC, Expand The Brand Launching in February 2022. 

The company’s goal is to help businesses grow by utilizing expertise and the expertise of established partners. Neiko states, “Our faith is at the core of what we do and we stand on.” When working with this agency you can assure you will have the highest quality of support and the highest return on your investment. They offer a variety of services to grow your business including social media strategy & management, web design and virtual assistance. They also offer other effective management tools to help grow and maintain your business. 

“At Expand The Brand, we strive to be the best and will serve you with the BEST!” said owner, Neiko Hannah. 

Want to learn more? Book A free consultation with them today by going to their website at https://www.theexpandthebrandagency.com/ and filling out the contact form.

You can visit their websiteFaceBook or Instagram to see more about Expand The Brand services.Ex

KCs precision auto

KC’s Precision Auto

KC’s Precision Auto has recently opened at 9600 Ploof Road in the new Ploof Road Business Park in Leland. The owner, Casey Northrup, has 30 years of experience as an ASE certified master technician. For 20 years, he owned and operated KC’s Performance Auto Care in East Montpelier, VT. After living in Brunswick County for 2 years, he decided it was time to set up an auto repair shop again.

Setting up a new business in a new state can be a challenge. Casey was looking for guidance and found the Small Business Center at Brunswick Community College. Casey stated, “Ms. Scott at the Small Business Center was a terrific resource, laying out the steps necessary to organize the business correctly with the IRS and the state of North Carolina and also providing great marketing ideas.”

KC’s Precision Auto is a full-service auto repair shop that can perform all aspects of auto repair including diagnostics, electrical repairs, oil changes, tune ups, timing belts, brake and suspension work, tire work and anything else that comes up. He has experience working with most makes and models but specializes in the imported brands such as Toyota, Lexus, Honda, Acura, Subaru, Kia, Hyundai, Mazda, BMW, VW, Audi, Mini Cooper and Mercedes.

Join Casey for his ribbon cutting on February 9th; 10:00am at his brand new location, 9600 Ploof Rd, Suite 1 Leland, NC.

You can make an appointment by calling or texting (910)408-1499, email [email protected], or messenger through Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100088194955488.

Tropical Smoothie Cafe logo

Tropical Smoothie Cafe

Tropical Smoothie Cafe, LLC, one of the fastest growing franchise concepts in the country, announced its newest franchised location is opening in Shallotte, NC on March 1,2023. The new location is owned and operated by Brandon & Deena Korman and marks their 4th Café to open in the area, with an additional 3 cafes slated to open in the next 2-3 years. Located at 123 Smith Avenue, the Shallotte cafe will be giving away Free Smoothies for a year to a random 50 guests who make a purchase the opening week. 

“Tropical Smoothie Cafe’s stellar growth would not be possible without dedicated and passionate franchisees like Brandon & Deena who continue to demonstrate confidence in our brand through the success of their cafes,” said Charles Watson, CEO of Tropical Smoothie Cafe, LLC. For more information about Tropical Smoothie Cafe, please visit www.tropicalsmoothiecafe.com

Interested in joining the Tropical Smoothie Cafe team? You can apply today by visiting https://tropicalsmoothiecafe.com/work-with-us/apply/ 

be sweet bakery logo

Be Sweet Bakery

When asked how Be Sweet Bakery, LLC came to be owner, Tria Brown shared how her love for baking started at an early age. She has been baking for 3 years professionally, but she has been whisking sugar ever since she was in the 5th grade. When Tria was younger she would stay up with her mom as she cooked and baked all night for the holidays. One of those evenings she handed her a box of cake mix and said “If you’re going to be in here you might as well help out! Besides, once you learn to follow a recipe you’ll be able to fix anything for the rest of your life.” From then on she was responsible for the desserts for all holidays. And as you can see I still am LOL!

Tria Brown stated, “Truly for me, it’s not just making dessert, it’s about creating a sweet experience. At Be Sweet Bakery I offer a range of standard cakes, cupcakes, pies, cookies, sweet breads, chocolate-covered treats, platters, and trays for family functions and office events. As well as custom confections for special occasions like weddings, birthdays, bridal or baby showers. “Actually, in my kitchen, every day is a great day for cake!”

Be Sweet Bakery is located in Leland, NC and operated out of a NC Food & Agriculture-certified in-home kitchen. You can see what sweet creations came out of her oven on Facebook, Instagram, TikTok & Pinterest using the handle @besweetbakes and while you’re there please like, follow and share! She promptly answer messages on Facebook & Instagram and can be reached at (910) 632-0155.

chocolate and s'more food truck and owner

Chocolate & S’more

Our latest Small Business Center Spotlight is Chocolate and S’more! It has been a dream of owner, Sheila Hall since college at East Carolina University and first came to mind when she started pairing sweet and savory ingredients together to make a s’more.

While technically not a coffee business, coffee drinks are on the menu along with other gourmet sips including teas, Italian sodas, lemonades and the most popular frozen hot chocolates. The menu can pivot with hot or cold sips depending on the temperatures and since they stock over 40 sauces and syrups, sips can always be blended per the customer’s choice or a customer can try the weekly feature. Coffees are roasted in NC by 321 Coffee, a Raleigh based business that employees people with developmental disabilities. Teas are blended in NC, frozen drinks are made with a proprietary blend that is manufactured here in NC, and a 3rd generation company out of NC produces our paper products. When someone supports Chocolate and S’more, they are also supporting four other NC businesses and that list continues to grow.

Gourmet s’mores are new to the menu, pairing sweet and savory ingredients together in a real sandwiched s’more. Customers can expect that menu to change seasonally, depending on fruits that are in season.

To learn more, follow Chocolate and S’more on Instagram or Facebook @Chocolateandsmore. Contact Sheila today to schedule an event at [email protected] or (910) 444-8305. You can also visit BCC’s main campus next Monday and Friday from 9 AM-1 PM. They are a huge hit among students and staff!

small business center entrepreneur

Swell Home

Another Small Business Center success story! Thanks to the guidance and support she received from Brunswick Community College’s Small Business Center, Jessica Pickett (pictured) will spend August 5, 2022, opening Swell-Home, a Hunter Douglas Gallery servicing residential and commercial clients. Her showroom will feature fresh concepts in window treatments and interior design, perfect for Coastal Carolina.

“Working with the Small Business Center has been paramount to preparing me for opening and running a small business,” said Pickett. “The classes offered on all aspects of business, from putting together a Business Plan to Taxes have helped me prepare for my new business Swell-Home. The hands on business advice and business plan review helped me understand if I was on the right track and where I might need to do some work. Their advice helped me avoid missteps and made me focus on what I needed to do next.”

BCC’s Small Business Center provide local, experienced counselors as advisers for new and existing businesses. Available on an as-needed basis, this confidential service acts as a sounding board for ideas or concerns you may have about your business. At no charge, our professional staff will help you find solutions to your business questions. We also offer Co-Working space and Business and Industry Incubator opportunities.

You can find the new Swell-Home showroom at 497 Olde Waterford Way, Suite 105, Belville, NC, and can reach Pickett at 910-769-4980 or www.swell-home.com.

Port City Plates

Rob & Shelly Marketell grew up in Western NY-Rochester and always dreamed of living down south. After 30+ years in corporate and non-profit roles and having two grown children, they made the move a year ago to Leland, NC. “Working with April Scott and the Small Business Center was instrumental in helping us navigate the challenges of starting our our own business through providing guidance, knowledge and support as we moved through the process. Thank you April and SBC for helping us bring our dream into reality!”

The “Plate” as it’s known, started decades ago as a meal to cure an impending hangover. It quickly became the famous meal of Western New York.

What Is a Trash Plate? A traditional Plate comes with 2 cheeseburgers or 2 Zweigles hot dogs (Rochester’s famous all beef Red Hot or Pork White hot) and two generous helpings of homemade home fries and macaroni salad. It’s topped off with mustard, chopped onion, and smothered in a homemade meat hot sauce. It’s the meat hot sauce that ties it all together! Other proteins are available like chicken tenders or grilled chicken. Baked beans, tater tots and French fries are also available as sides.

There are 4 different ways to have it:

The Trash Plate – everything piled high on a plate
The Trash Can – an easy hand-held deli container full of all the ingredients of a plate
The Trash Wrap – everything in a tortilla
The Trash Burger – all the sides and toppings piled high on a traditional burger and bun

Rob & Shelly can’t wait to meet and serve everyone! When you come up to the window, make sure to say “Hi” and “I’ll take a Plate.” You can find Port City Plates at Brunswick Community College main campus, Nov 9, Dec 7th & 14th and follow them on Facebook and Instagram for other locations.

we are open sign on door of small business

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