Georgian event to pair mentors with Collingwood agencies
October 21, 2014

Imagine if new entrepreneurs could shorten their learning curve and gain insights from experienced business owners. Such advising could help jump-start new businesses and give them a stronger likelihood of surviving and thriving.

That is the concept behind a free business mentorship event planned for the John di Poce South Georgian Bay Campus of Georgian College on Friday, Oct. 24 from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.

The event, part of Collingwood Small Business Week, aims to connect potential mentors with local agencies that offer mentorship programs in the Collingwood area.

Participants will learn about the many factors that impact the success of a mentoring relationship through presentations by guest speakers and a panel discussion with mentors and those who would like to use mentoring services. They will also enjoy lunch courtesy of the Henry Bernick Entrepreneurship Centre at Georgian College.

Participants can find their best fit among local agencies and share their resumé. Potential mentees can use the event to learn more about the process and to network.

Keynote speaker Jeremy O’Krafka of MENTORnetwork will talk about creating a culture of mentorship in South Georgian Bay.

His talk will be followed by a panel discussion featuring Ron Neuman of the Innovation Factory and a mentor at the Henry Bernick Entrepreneurship Centre; Steve Barrett of Innovation Guelph and HalTech; Mike Scholte, a real estate broker at Century 21 Millennium Inc. Brokerage, a mortgage agent for Mortgage Alliance, a professional coach at JEMI Coaching and chaplain at All Seasons Weddings; and three business operators who have benefited from mentoring.

Shona Welsh, Executive Director of Part-time Studies and Workforce Development, Georgian College, will wrap up the discussion with her talk on the traits needed to be a good mentor. Welsh has been working in the area of mentorship for close to 20 years, having designed and advised on the creation of mentoring programs for numerous organizations in the corporate, government, and not-for-profit sectors. She is the author of the book, Mentoring the Future: A Guide to Building Mentor Programs that Work.

Space is limited! Potential mentors or those interested in being mentored should visit or call 705.445.2961, ext. 1774 to reserve a seat.