AU and Florida State colleagues help veterans excel in the business world

AU and Florida State colleagues help veterans excel in the business world

(WTVM) - On Jan. 6 they will be rivals on the football field. But, every other day of the year colleagues from Auburn University and Florida State University work together to help veterans transfer back to the business world. The program is called Entrepreneurship Boot Camp for Veterans with Disabilities, or EBV.

"The EBV program has specifically targeted disabled veterans. These are folks that have become injured physically or psychologically. A lot of employees are weary about folks who have disabilities and so what we are trying to do is put them in a position to support themselves and their families economically, not to be dependent on anyone else," explains Dave Ketchen, a Lowder Eminent Scholar and a volunteer instructor in the program.

The program started at Syracuse University in 2007 and has spread to seven other campuses, including Florida State.

EBV is offered one or two times a year. The veterans have an all expense paid 10 day stay in Tallahassee to participate in the program.

You may have seen Renee Floyd driving around Columbus and Phenix City in her company van, BRF Mobile Lube Services, a business that allows her to provide oil changes remotely.

Floyd has spent 21 years in the military and is 2011 graduate of the EBV program.

"Prior to starting with EBV, I had hit a wall. I wasn't moving in the business and of course I was brand new as a business owner. They just provided me with all the keys that I need to step out, step up, and make my business a success," says Floyd.

Floyd will board a plane to Afghanistan on Saturday.

There Floyd is working as a maintenance supervisor, a special skill, along with EBV training, that has help made her business back home a success.

"The Army made me a leader, a manager, but there was still some things missing and EBV filled those spots for me," says Floyd.

The program has graduated more than 700 veterans and created an estimated 670 new jobs all over the nation.

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