Peer-based Learning Experience
Through this 12 week, 36-hour program, you will gain practical skills that you can immediately put into action and learn how to create a business improvement plan to help grow your business. Learn the foundations of small business management and other tools needed for a successful small business through this FREE training program that provides the following:
- Team of experts that teach marketing, financials, human resource and operations, insurance and legal, and how to develop a tactical improvement plan
- Learn from experienced entrepreneurs through our peer-based learning model
- Coaching support from a business coach and financial coach
- Our training is held in local Philadelphia communities so local businesses can connect and network easily
Who is Eligible
- Business located within the City of Philadelphia
- In business for at least one year with some sales (sales cannot exceed $1 million)
- Have one full-time equivalent employee (can include owner or 2 part-timers)
- Must be an owner, have an ownership stake or be a decision maker in the company
Gibson School of the Arts
“My favorite part of the Power Up business program is working with the coaches. I had a fantastic coach who really helped me develop my tactical goals and I’m basically working on those goals even today. And also determining and identifying my branding. That was that exercise and that whole branding classes that we went through that really helped me to determine who we are and what I want to put out in the world when they think about Gibson School of Music and Arts. That branding exercise was very eye opening and I didn’t even know some of the things that I know as an individual and as a company that that this is the message that I want to present. I got so much out of it. It provides structure. Going through all of the different things that you face in your business with finances, marketing, insurance. It basically covered everything a business owner will ever encounter. No stone was unturned and that basically it covers everything that you as a business owner that you will face in your business. I would definitely recommend this program to any other business owner because what they would gain would be so valuable for their business. It’s invaluable what you will learn from this Power Up program.”
– Wilhemina Gibson
Dates and Locations
Workshops are from 6 to 9 p.m. on Wednesdays.
Wednesday, January 17, 2024, through April 10, 2024
Applications due December 10, 2023
Classes will be held virtually.
Peer-Based Learning cohorts occur three times per year. Class size is limited.
More than 300 businesses located in every zip code in Philadelphia, have completed this incredible free program.
To qualify for acceptance to the Peer-Based Learning Experience program, your business must be operational and registered within Philadelphia city limits.
Marz Auto Central
“I would like all Philly businesses to know that Power Up is very accessible. And not the be fearful that you don’t have time to do it. There’s always time to be educated.”
– Monica Parrilla
Monica noted that one of the benefits of Power Up is the individualized men¬toring during the program and one year after graduation. Her coach helped her use the business model to include a clear analysis of their marketing plan, customer value proposition and understanding their customers. Their coach introduced them to Mailchimp, which is now an integral tool for sending emails.
“Being participants in the Peer-based Learning Program helped me to fully understand the different aspects that go into opening and running a small business,” noted Natasha. “The coaching and the Tactical Improvement Plan (TIP) were the most helpful tools in moving our business forward. The TIP development process helped us assess and break down our business challenges from every angle, allowing us to get a better idea of where we were and where we wanted to be in creating realistic and actionable steps. Power Up helps you assess and build a strong foundation for your business.”
– Natasha Crawford
ARTrageous Brush & Flow
“I have been implementing so much of what I learned in the Power Up Program from financial planning to marketing. There was something special about having instructors who were not only qualified in their fields right there at our fin¬gertips, but having peers from various businesses to bounce ideas off of and network with.”
– Moneek Pines
How to Apply
To apply for the Peer-based Learning Experience program, simply complete our online application and email the following business verification information to firstname.lastname@example.org:
1. Submit one of the following:
- a copy of your most recent business tax return
- a copy of your most recent Profit and Loss Statement
2. Submit a copy of your City Commercial Activity License (CAL): Applicants who do not have their CAL at time of submission may obtain it prior to the start of the program.
3. Applicant must obtain a support letter (recommendation) from their area CDC, business association, civic association, City council person, or from a small business support organization.
Philadelphia Laser and Industrial Design
Sharif found a wealth of knowledge and tools that helped him to better understand the blind spots in his business. The Business Model Canvas and collaborative spirit of 1-on-1 coaching gave Sharif a new perspective on his growing business. Focused learning around the Tactical Improvement Plan helped Sharif to organize and launch a refresh of products and promotions that has already started rolling out in Philadelphia Laser & Industrial Design site and storefront.
– Sharif Pendleton
Thinking about enrolling but need additional information or assistance with registering?
V Marks the Shop
“Being a graduate of Cohort 14 in Power Up was a highlight of 2021 for me. I learned so much from the classes and workshops, especially around areas of finance and operations. My mentor and business coach really gave me ‘food for thought’ during each mentoring session. I was able to really take a step back, identify opportunities, and set goals to find ways to grow and improve my business. COVID-19 hit us hard. I honestly feel that if it weren't for Power Up that I wouldn't have the wherewithal to keep pushing and rebuilding my business.”
– Carmella Lanni
Cannstatter Volksfest-Verein Catering
“I took over as the general manager and was looking for better ways to handle our two large catering rooms and expand the business of our seven acres of onsite picnic grounds. I found out that Community College of Philadelphia was providing the Power Up Your Business Program to help businesses pivot and expand their operations. With a small staff of only six permanent employees and a fluctuating part-time staff of about 20 waiters and bartenders, it was becoming tougher and tougher to compete.”
– Pauline Mann
“Based on what I got out of this program, I would recommend it 100 percent to other business owners. There is always something to take away and learn from the experience. There is tremendous value in working with qualified instructors and peers alike; everyone brings a different approach or skillset to the table. I have had several meetings with my business coach and have found it extremely helpful for my continued knowledge and growth.”
– Carolyn Nguyen