The Business Development Center (BDC) at the University of Washington, Bothell celebrated two years of operations with its annual Report to the Community in April. Local business and government leaders gathered to share the work and accomplishments of the BDC and the community.
Led by Dr. Walter Freytag, the BDC provides consultation from students and a business counselor to business owners in the north King/south Snohomish area. Since the BDC’s inception in 2006, it has helped to provide consulting to more than 70 local business projects resulting in an approximate value of $300,000 to the community.
Business owner John Holmes of Mill Creek receives one-on-one business counseling, and has had help from student teams from Everett Community College and UW-Bothell.
Reflecting on his experience, Holmes stated, “It is like taking a business and marketing degree program over time. We have seen great revenue growth in our four or five business segments — 50-70 percent — and even 157 percent in one segment. It forces you to get into a mode of thinking about how to manage your business and grow almost every day.”
UW-Bothell student James Floresca was on a student team that conducted a job costing project that gave a small manufacturer accurate overhead and project bidding calculations.
Floresca reflects that, “in a classroom setting, the professor gives you the problem and you just have to develop a solution. In this project, we had our primary tasks and objectives, but it wasn’t until we got into the project, evaluated the situation and talked to the owner that we could determine what we needed to do for the client.”
The Business Development Center will conduct new consulting projects with at least 35 businesses in 2008.