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News from My Own Business Institute

MOBI Newsletter - Summer 2020

Welcome to the quarterly MOBI newsletter! Each quarter we reach out to our alumni and readers to share important highlights from Santa Clara University's MOBI program. We hope you will enjoy these updates and continue your relationship with MOBI on your path toward entrepreneurship!

We send our best wishes for your health and safety during this difficult time. We express our most sincere gratitude to all frontline and essential workers, especially the fire fighters here in California and the West Coast, and we send thoughts of strength and courage as many are facing extreme challenges due to the pandemic and its economic consequences.

Feel free to opt out of this newsletter by clicking the unsubscribe link at the bottom. To read this newsletter in Spanish, please click here.

Thank you from MOBI!

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MOBI Welcomes Largest Partner Group to Date!

In late August new MOBI partner Cristo Rey De La Salle East Bay High School in California kicked off an entrepreneurship program featuring the MOBI curriculum. The program and collaborative course will support 250 students in its initial cohort. This is MOBI’s largest single cohort to date and we are honored to support Cristo Rey De La Salle in this amazing program! Cristo Rey De La Salle is a diverse, Lasallian Catholic learning community that educates young people of limited economic means to become men and women of faith, purpose, and service. August 2020 is one of MOBI’s highest enrollment months to date. Welcome to all of our students embarking on your entrepreneurial journey this fall!

MOBI Students around the World in 2020 - New York

This quarter we would like to highlight our students in New York, who comprise the greatest number of certificate recipients so far in 2020. 

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We congratulate our New York students on their outstanding achievements, whether participating on our open courses or through an affiliate organization such as the New York Self-Employment Assistance Program (SEAP). Well done MOBI graduates! We wish you the best in pursuing your business goals!

Paths to Recovery: Adapting to the Pandemic


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Each year MOBI surveys our certificate holders about their learning experience and their business goals. This year we expanded our survey to include questions about the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on their small businesses. Based on the responses, we found there are five key ways MOBI alumni are adapting their businesses to meet the challenges of 2020. MOBI Executive Director and Santa Clara University Professor of Information Systems and Analytics Drew Starbird, Ph.D. wrote about the findings in a blog post entitled, “Paths to Recovery: Adapting to the Pandemic.” Read the full story here, or by visiting the Special Topics section of our MOBI Blog for Entrepreneurs page on the website. 

Your feedback is always important and helps us provide content that is valuable to you! If you have any questions, suggestions or comments you’d like to share, no need to wait for a survey, just send an email to

MOBI Success Story

We are so proud of the accomplishments of our MOBI students around the world. Each quarter we will share the story of one MOBI entrepreneur.

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Juvenal Pancarte started David & Aron Landscaping after gaining experience in the industry when he first came to the US from Mexico. He started by doing jobs on the side and then decided it was time to go on his own. The business now has over 70 clients and was recently awarded a maintenance contract with a local elementary school. He and his wife Ruby discovered MOBI through partner Yacanex Community, and the curriculum helped them improve the organization, financial management, and marketing of their business.

Partner Spotlight

MOBI partners are an important part of the MOBI program!  By forming partnerships with diverse communities of students around the world, MOBI can inspire entrepreneurship in ways that best meet the specific opportunities of each group, and always for free. 

This quarter MOBI features partner Bluefield West Virginia Economic Development Authority (BEDA). Bluefield West Virginia (WV) and the surrounding communities had been a hub of economic prosperity and development sustained by booming coal and railroad industries. As those industries declined, so did the economy of the Bluefield region. The Bluefield WV Department of Community & Economic Development (CED) embarked on efforts to revitalize the community, and through growth of these efforts BEDA was formed. CED and BEDA pursue revitalization in three ways: supporting existing business and industry to help diversification and growth, cultivate entrepreneurship and innovation, and attract new industry, especially in the “TEAM” sectors of Technology, Energy, and Advanced Manufacturing. MOBI spoke with CED and BEDA Executive Director Jim Spencer and Business Operations and Marketing Coordinator Savannah Carabin to learn more about their programs and how MOBI fits in.

Why you chose MOBI? BEDA had been on an upward trend in pursuing its objectives, and had created momentum within the community through several programs including networking events, “office hours” with experts and mentors, and classes on a variety of business-related topics held outside normal working hours so business owners and managers could attend and still run their businesses. As a next step we were looking for an entrepreneurship training program we could offer as an “Entrepreneur Boot Camp.” We learned about MOBI and began looking into it. The speed and ease students are able to proceed through the course fit well with our objectives and the needs of our students. We didn’t want a program that would take years to finish. Then COVID-19 emerged and we needed a program that could be entirely online as well. MOBI was the answer.

How is MOBI making a difference for your students? MOBI provides fast-paced, quality content that really gets to the point. Students can finish a module in 35-40 minutes, which is really motivating. We also really like MOBI’s approach to writing a business plan because it encourages you to apply what you’ve learned. This is the type of education we were looking for, where learning can be applied in real world situations. The flexibility is also really important for our students because they can take the course and work a full-time job. We tell our students they don’t need to complete the full course. Many of our students already own their own businesses, and they just want to brush up on a few areas. This helps reduce the failure rate among businesses. Supporting businesses is our primary goal, and if students can get the business information they need, whether they take the whole class or just a few sessions, our program is successful. We want to accelerate business development and growth, motivate people to get started, and reduce failure rate among businesses. MOBI is the perfect solution.

Anything else? Our working relationship with MOBI has been phenomenal. There was a huge gap because of COVID-19, and not only did we fill it, but we are stronger now. We are excited to see the continued impact of our entrepreneurship programs with the inclusion of MOBI’s curriculum. Bluefield West Virginia is also one of five communities in the Appalachian region selected to participate in Intuit’s Prosperity Hub Program which officially launched in September 2019. The Prosperity Hub will include a customer success center and innovation lab, and eventually create up to 500 jobs. “Our partnership with MOBI to provide entrepreneurial education is also strategically aligned with our objectives with Intuit’s Prosperity Hub Program, and we are so excited to bring these resources to our community and the larger West Virginia region,” said Jim Spencer. (For more information, see the Bluefield Daily Telegraph article “Intuit Officially Launches Prosperity Hub Program.”)

Do you know an organization or school that might be interested in partnering with MOBI? 

Special Events:

Events of note over the past few months.

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Dr. Naren Agrawal Appointed Interim LSB Dean and MOBI Advisory Board Member

On April 29, SCU President Fr. Kevin O’Brien, S.J., announced that Dr. Naren Agrawal has been appointed interim dean of Santa Clara University’s Leavey School of Business, effective July 1, 2020. We are honored that Dean Agrawal has also accepted a position on MOBI’s Advisory Board. Read the Press Release for more details on Dean Agrawal's appointment and achievements. 

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Emprendete: Iniciar un Negocio Kicks Off Online!

The next cohort of Emprendete: Iniciar un Negocio course began on September 3. MOBI curriculum is taught in Spanish by MOBI partner Yacanex Community. Typically a hybrid in-person/online course, this cohort will be taught entirely online, allowing students from as far as Illinois, Wisconsin, and Virginia to enroll. We wish the best for these Emprendete 2.0 students!

Popular Posts

MOBI highlights one theme every week on our social media platforms. We post blogs, videos, lists, and articles on a variety of topics relevant for aspiring entrepreneurs. Based upon reader activity, here are some top stories from the past quarter.

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Inc. Magazine Revisits Steve Jobs’ Perspective on the importance of perseverance.

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3 Tips from Forbes for Managing Customer Experience

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“Great Books to help leaders better understand issues of social inequality and inspire positive action"

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Thank you for reading!

We wish you all the best in business success! Stay well!

The MOBI Team

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