UAHT offers new business program

By submitted, 09/6/22 9:19 AM

HOPE-TEXARKANA – Applications are now open to entrepreneurs who aspire to turn their ideas into viable businesses or new business owners who want to increase their chances for sustainability. The new “Start Smart, Grow Smart” entrepreneurship program at the University of Arkansas Hope-Texarkana (UAHT) will seek to aid in the growth of local economic development by equipping hopeful business owners with the tools they need to start and grow a thriving business. “UAHT has many excellent academic programs that allow students to achieve their life goals through education,” said Akili Moses Israel, Director of Continuing Education. “For those who dream of opening a business of their own, we are here to help them increase their chances for startup success and continued sustainability. We want to support our neighbors to make a living by doing what they are most passionate about.”

UAHT offers several programs that provide students with employment skills that could also allow them to operate as independent business owners. Start Smart, Grow Smart can help students turn those skills into profitable businesses. “We hope to cultivate a culture of innovation and entrepreneurship on campus and throughout our service area communities,” Dr. Christine Holt, UAHT Chancellor, said.

Selected startup founders will participate in a small cohort of entrepreneurs in a 6-week program that will take them through essential business planning for new business owners and those hoping to start a new enterprise. Classes will be held on Thursdays from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. Cohorts will alternate between the Hope and Texarkana campuses. The first cohort will be held at Hempstead Hall on the UA Hope campus from October 6 through November 10, 2022.

The Start Smart, Grow Smart program is supported by the Small Business Administration Community Navigator Program through the University of Arkansas Division of Agriculture Research and Extension and the Arkansas Small Business and Technology Development Center. Founders will be connected to local entrepreneurship resources.

Applicants will be asked to share their business concept or information about their early-stage existing business. To prepare students to launch their business concepts, they will be invited to pitch their business or startup ideas. Prizes will be awarded to the top three pitches.

For more information or to register, visit or contact Akili Moses Israel at 870.722.8568 or

This program was launched with support from the Hempstead County Economic Development Corporation.