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Direct Selling Education Foundation and National Association for Community College Entrepreneurship Join to Address Educational Needs of Direct Sellers
(Washington, DC – February 22, 2011) – Individuals who are considering a career in direct selling or who are in the early stages of their growth in this field will soon have the opportunity to increase their relevant knowledge and skill set by participating in a Direct Selling Entrepreneur Program at their local community college. Through a new partnership, the Direct Selling Education Foundation (DSEF), a nonprofit public education organization affiliated with the Direct Selling Association, and the National Association for Community College Entrepreneurship (NACCE) are developing the curriculum for a non-credit program that will be made available to community colleges across the country. The curriculum is expected to be available as a pilot in Fall 2011.
“Direct selling can offer a great career opportunity for a wide array of people” says DSEF Board Member Sarah Baker Andrus, who is director of External Relations and Academic Programs at CUTCO/Vector. “Our objective with this new educational effort is to make sure people entering this profession have the complete entrepreneurial skills set that will support their success. We also believe that a better educated workforce will help improve salesforce retention for Direct Selling Association member companies.”
NACCE, which represents community colleges nationwide that are using entrepreneurship education to boost economic development in their communities, sees the new program as an exciting new option for its members. “We believe our members will be excited to make this new curriculum available to individuals in the regions they serve,” says NACCE Executive Director Heather Van Sickle. “We are excited to participate in this effort with the Direct Selling Education Foundation and look forward to helping them increase awareness of the entrepreneurial opportunities in the field of direct selling.”
More than 16 million people, generating annual retail sales of nearly $30 billion in theUnited States, participate in direct selling, defined as the sale of a consumer product or service, person-to-person, away from a fixed retail location, and marketed through independent sales representatives. This program is designed to assist people entering this field who need to be equipped with knowledge of marketing, time management, finances, and leadership, among other key topics. This educational program will have two main components: the first is a workshop that will provide information on direct selling to help participants decide if this career option is for them. The second component is a content-driven learning program to provide students with the knowledge they need to excel in direct sales.
“As a public service organization, DSEF fosters an understanding of direct selling entrepreneurial opportunities can empower individuals, support communities and strengthen economies worldwide,” says DSEF Program Director Robin Diamond. “This new educational program will help direct selling entrepreneurs build their businesses by combining strong entrepreneurship skill training with direct selling-specific learning. By engaging publicly-funded community colleges in the process, this program represents a step forward not just for the students participating but for the direct selling industry as a whole.”
The Direct Selling Education Foundation serves the public interest by advancing the direct selling industry’s support of consumer rights and protection, education about the industry, ethical leadership and individual economic empowerment. Through its partnerships with consumer advocates, educators and students, public policy officials, and members of the small business and entrepreneurship community, DSEF enhances public awareness of direct selling in the global marketplace. For more information visit, http://www.dsef.org
The National Association for Community College Entrepreneurship (NACCE) is an organization of educators, entrepreneurs, and distinguished business development professionals providing quality programs and services in entrepreneurship education at the community college level. Founded in 2002, NACCE is at the heart of the “entrepreneurship movement.” Through advocacy, membership, an annual conference and exhibition, a quarterly journal, monthly webinars and podcasts, a dynamic list-serv, and other resources, NACCE serves as the hub for the dissemination and integration of knowledge and successful practices regarding entrepreneurship education and student business incubation. These programs and courses advance economic prosperity in the communities served by its member colleges. NACCE is a founding member of the White House-led Startup America Partnership. For more information, visit http://www.nacce.com