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Business Incubator Opens on WSC Campus

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Business Incubator Opens on WSC Campus

Posted: May 13 2016
WILLISTON, N.D. - Located in the Crighton Building on Williston State College's campus and led by WSC's Continuing Education Division, Williston's first Business Incubator is taking applications and will be hosting an open house Tuesday, May 17 from 9:30-11:00 a.m.

Created out of the idea that Williston lacks a resource for startup companies to develop, Williston State College wanted to alleviate the high demand for management training and inexpensive office space that was brought to its attention by Williston's Economic Development.

Williston's Business Incubator provides access to professional workspace twenty-four hours a day, seven days a week. High speed Internet, phone services, a conference room, on-site security, and a shared receptionist all set Williston's Business Incubator apart from other rentals in the Williston area.

Six furnished offices, ranging from 96 to 234 square feet, and two classrooms are available for three categories of applications.

Anchor Tenants are defined as existing companies. They will be provided permanent office space with access to a conference room when needed on 6, 12, 24, or 36-month leases.

Resident Tenants are start-up companies that will have workspace access on the same terms as Anchor Tenants.

Short-Term Tenants are accepted on a first-come first-served basis to both start-up and existing companies. They can rent offices on month-to-month contracts that will not exceed five months.

"During the boom there were many new start-up ventures in the community and Williston Economic Development, WSC, and TrainND discussed solutions to help," stated Deanette Piesik, CEO TrainND-Northwest. "WSC President, Dr. Nadolny saw merit in pursuing the Business Incubator after noticing that several business incubators are hosted on community colleges."

A community college is an important factor when Economic Development is recruiting businesses to Northwest North Dakota. The Incubator also provides strategic connections through the Small Business Development Center (SBDC), Economic Development, Department of Commerce, and WSC as well as assisting with entrepreneurship training in partnership with the other incubator programs in the state.

Williston's Business Incubator was made possible through the work of Taylor Gauthier. Gauthier, a 2016 Leadership Williston Graduate, used the implementation of WSC's Business Incubator as her final project.

"The Leadership Williston's community betterment project provided me with the opportunity to assist in the development of the Business Incubator," explained Gauthier. "It's exciting to see my project coming to life in just a few short months!"

Gauthier now leads the Incubator Advisory Committee as Business Incubator Director. Committee members include Williston Economic Development Executive Director Shawn Wenko and Williston's SBDC Director Keith Olson. When an application has been submitted, the advisory committee will review and determine which applicants will be accepted into the space.

"Taylor has worked many hours putting the final product together," Piesik said. "We are both excited to see what the future brings and how the Continuing Education Department can assist new businesses in Williston. Our hope is that the Business Incubator is the stepping stone they need to join the Williston business community."

Williston's first Business Incubator is now taking applications for tenants to take occupancy in May. Please contact Taylor Gauthier about applications at 701.774.6236 or
Applications will be available on the WSC website later this month.
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