Center for Economic Inclusion
The SURESM Program: Where We've Been
The SURE℠ Program was launched in Fall 2012 with a mission to enable economic stimulation by serving aspiring local entrepreneurs from underserved communities and Veterans in the Houston area. The SURE℠ Program provides FREE financial and business education, ongoing business consulting and prepares entrepreneurs to access capital.
While the SURE℠ Program has supported microfinance efforts in Africa, India, Mexico and China, Robert Grinaker Professor of Accounting and SURE℠ Founding Director Saleha Khumawala has recognized that there is a need here in the Houston area. Almost 20 percent of Houstonians live in areas designated as high poverty neighborhoods and over nine percent live on less than $2.00 per day.
Housed at the Bauer College of Business, the SURE℠ Program offers education modules and mentorship for businesses in their beginning stages of development. By partnering Bauer business students with aspiring entrepreneurs, the program has developed a unique model of experiential learning. It consists of three active components: SURE℠ Entrepreneur, SURE℠ Boot Camp for Veterans and SURE℠ Incubator.
The SURE℠ Program offers the 13-week class twice a year (Spring and Fall), which were formerly housed in local community centers, including:
- Mission Milby
- Wheeler Avenue Baptist Church
- Baker-Ripley Neighborhood Center
- Independence Heights Neighborhood Center
- Leonell Castillo Neighborhood Center
- Ripley House Neighborhood Center
Due to the rising demand and success of the SURE℠ Program, we moved to the University of Houston to accommodate the increased number of participants. Since its inception, the SURE℠ Program has educated and trained over 1,500 entrepreneurs.