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This article by Kathleen McGinn Spring was prepared for the February 5, 2003 edition of U.S. 1 Newspaper. All rights reserved.

Entrepreneurship For Engineers

Three organizations — the IEEE, Princeton POEM and

NJSBDC — are collaborating to help engineers and technical


from Lucent and other telecom firms consider new careers in


"From the time that the big Lucent layoffs were announced in the

summer of 2001, I wanted to deliver one or more seminars for the


and other technical professionals who were being laid off," says

Randy Harmon of the New Jersey Small Business Development


"I figured that many of them would probably consider a new career

in entrepreneurship."

Harmon envisioned a seminar similar to one he had given with attorneys

of Hale and Dorr for the Venture Association of New Jersey on


and Financing a Sci/Tech Business in New Jersey. "I thought it

could dissuade the faint of heart from entrepreneurship while helping

the true entrepreneurs get started on the right track."

"Over a period of several weeks I tried to penetrate the Lucent

maze to identify the right person who could help make this happen.

I hit a dead end on their website and with the voice mail of their

outplacement firm and was very disappointed. Even Hale and Dorr was

unable to find a door in," says Harmon.

That door came through Joe Montemarano, the industrial liaison at

Princeton University’s POEM Center. "He asked if we might do a

workshop on Small Business Innovation Research grants that was


to the IEEE’s Princeton/Central Jersey membership, many of whom were

laid off Lucent engineers considering entrepreneurship," says


So Harmon scheduled an SBIR Phase II conference on Friday, February

28, from 7:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. at Princeton University’s POEM center

on Olden Avenue. Abhay Joshi of Discovery Semiconductors, winner

of the SBA Tibbets Award for commercializing SBIR Technology, is the

keynote speaker. Cost: $90. Call 800-432-1832.

Harmon also scheduled a seminar that would cover a broader range of

entrepreneurship topics: "Launching and Financing a Business in

New Jersey," co-sponsored by the IEEE, the NJSBDC Technology


Center, and Princeton Poem. It is set for Wednesday, February 19,

from 2:30 to 5:30 p.m. at the POEM center, Princeton University


Quad, on Olden Avenue in Princeton. Cost: $35 in advance, $50 at the

door, and free to IEEE members. Call 973-353-1923 or register online


Presenters for the three-hour workshop are David Breithaupt

and Larry Chong of Princeton Strategic Management on Mercer

Road; Debra Dorfman, Richard Mattessich, and Louis


of Hale and Dorr; and Randy Harmon of NJSBDC Technology



Says Harmon: "We found a back door in to tapping the pool of


unemployed technical professionals. This is a two-year-old plan come

to fruition."

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Media Watch

Creative Marketing Alliance , with offices at 191


Road, has added six new companies to its client roster. They are Lynch

Martin Attorneys At Law in North Brunswick, Homasote in West Trenton,

Claims Management Services in Princeton, Preservation and Development

Associates in Ridgewood, International Nanny Association in Princeton

Junction, and International Furnishings Design Association Educational

Institute in Princeton Junction.

Assignments for these clients range from strategic and creative design

services for Preservation & Development Associates to association

management, support services, and strategic public relations for the

International Nanny Association.

The Westin Princeton at Forrestal Village has awarded its


and public relations account to Hollyrock/Miller Marketing

Communications ,

a marketing communications agency with offices at 116 Village


Princeton Communications Group , an advertising, marketing,

and communications firm with offices at 20 Nassau Street, has


that Gillian E. Sterling has joined its public relations department

as public relations manager.

Prior to joining the Princeton Communications Group, Sterling was

director of public relations at Wesley, Brown & Bartle, a


executive search firm on Madison Avenue. A graduate of the University

of Washington in Seattle, London’s Ealing College, and Queens College,

she grew up in England, where she retains a 17th Century thatched

roof cottage home. She has been a Princeton resident for 11 years.

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Prospective students interested in enrolling in a


training course aimed at helping not-for-profit organizations increase

their self-sufficiency and reduce their reliance on grant funding

must complete a needs assessment with the Seton Hall Institute on

Work no later than Monday, February 10.

The eight-week course, sponsored by the New Jersey Development


for Small Businesses, Minorities’ and Women’s Enterprises (NJDA),

will be held on Tuesdays in Newark beginning on March 4 and Thursdays

in Trenton beginning on March 13. NJDA programs are managed by the

New Jersey Economic Development Authority (EDA).

The Newark class is held in the PSE&G Building, 80 Park Plaza, second

floor. The Trenton class is held at the Mercer County Technical


Assunpink Campus, Building A, 1085 Old Trenton Road.

The needs assessment can be arranged by calling the Seton Hall


Institute on Work at 973-313-6103. There is a $200 assessment fee

and $100 special facilitation fee payable to the Institute in addition

to the $295 nonrefundable ETI course fee. Seton Hall staff members

who understand small business and the world of not-for-profits will

serve as facilitators, working directly with students.

Students enrolled in the specialized course complete a market analysis

to identify the needs for their services, review planning, marketing

and financial fundamentals, and learn how to develop resources and

organize boards to ensure that their organizations run efficiently

and effectively, according to a written statement by EDA Executive

Director Caren S. Franzini.

"The ETI program offers practical information that helps students

develop a strategic, organized, step-by-step business plan," she

says. "Twelve students who completed our not-for-profit program

last year were among the record 108 ETI students who earned graduation

certificates last June."

For registration materials and more information about the ETI program,

visit, call ETI at 609-292-9279, or send an E-mail to Payment must be received for an applicant to be fully

registered and eligible to attend classes.

The NJDA is committed to fostering the growth of small businesses,

especially woman-owned and minority-owned enterprises, and not for

profits by offering a wide range of programs and services. For more

information on NJDA programs, call (609) 292-1800, or visit

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