Educators to Graduate from “Mini MBA”

11 Early Educators Complete Small Business Program Oct. 1

Tuesday, September 29, 2015

​The Sandbridge Day School was struggling with enrollment and profitability when its director, Beth Comerford, began taking courses in the Early Education Small Business Training and Mentoring Program. Ten months later, enrollment has more than doubled, profits are up and Beth has systematically improved every aspect of the school’s business operations.

That’s just one of the success stories being celebrated Thursday, Oct. 1 when Beth and 10 others graduate from a “Mini MBA” program for preschool owners, administrators and early childhood educators. It is sponsored by GrowSmart in partnership with the Small Business Development Center and funded by the City of Virginia Beach.

Mayor Will Sessoms will be the guest speaker for the graduation program that starts at 12 noon at the Virginia Beach Economic Development Office, 4525 Main St., Suite 700.   

This year’s graduates:

  • Beth Comerford, Sandbridge Chapel Day School

  • Clyde Deloach, Sandbridge Community Chapel UMC

  • Karen Dickerson, Plaza Baptist Christian Preschool

  • Colby Heard, King’s Kids Childcare

  • Debra Kaplan, Virginia Beach Parks & Recreation

  • Carol Landin, KidzWorld Learning Center

  • Susan Mathias, Rollingwood Academy

  • Jennifer Prodan, Rollingwood Academy

  • Mary Beth Russell, London Bridge Baptist Preschool and Kindergarten

  • Sheila Stratton, Le Bon Enfants

  • Melissa Wilson, KidzWorld Learning Center

The award-winning program is free for participants. It provides them with one-on-one mentoring and coursework in strategic planning; leadership; business systems; HR management; web marketing; budgeting; and financial management. Since it began in 2010, representatives from 107 small businesses have successfully completed the program.

                                                    # # #

​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​