The academy will feature a mix of both online and in-person courses, to reach both Jacksonville and out-of-market Creators alike, with many offerings being free of charge. Thanks to the new partnerships, individual paid courses will be only $20 in 2016. Local branding specialist Al Emerick will once again lead many of the courses, with additional instructors participating from the region and outside of the Jacksonville market.
Katharine Hartland, director of the Business & Entrepreneurial Law Clinic at Coastal Law, stated:
“Small business is the driving force behind most local economies, but not all business owners properly establish their enterprises successfully. One Spark Academy is a perfect way to equip business owners participating in One Spark for the momentum the festival provides.
“At Florida Coastal School of Law, we have helped over 50 small business owners and entrepreneurs with their legal startup needs through our Business & Entrepreneurial Law Clinic. The program is both beneficial to our students, as the work they do in the clinic prepares them to ‘hit the ground running’ upon graduation, while simultaneously contributing to Jacksonville’s small-business-friendly climate. We are excited about the future of our partnership with One Spark and the Jacksonville Chamber of Commerce; with programs like the One Spark Academy, we all win.”
“The Chamber is committed to creating an environment where entrepreneurs can thrive and this partnership with One Spark to support and educate Creators is a natural fit. We look forward to partnering with One Spark to help provide more access for up-and-coming entrepreneurs to turn their ideas into successful businesses.”
One Spark will hold a formal kick-off to the academy with its first free course, “Creator Foundations,” in mid-January. That course will take place at the Jessie Ball duPont Center in Downtown Jacksonville. A weekend-long One Spark Bootcamp will also be offered, which will serve as a recap of key highlights from many of the individual courses.
The Creator application period for One Spark 2016 is still open, and runs through Jan. 29, 2016. This year’s festival features a streamlined footprint, with Creators grouped by category in Creator Districts. The Districts include Arts & Culture, Education, Lifestyle, Health & Wellness, Social Good, and Technology & Engineering. Each District will host up to 50 expert-curated projects.