ENT 610 Week 3 Reflection

To say this week was trying would be an understatement. For those of us that were labeled as “essential personnel” the workload was heavy, and hours were long.  While doing my tasks for COVID-19 reaction and watching the news I took a few moments to reflect on entrepreneurship.

Entrepreneurship by nature is a person putting their financials on the line to make a business out of nothing. During this troubling time with businesses having to close their doors for either safety or due to state-mandated closures, there are people without work, but there are small businesses that are told to close because they are not essential. 

The state of Arizona, the state that I currently live in, announced today that there is an executive order calling for nonessential businesses to close, asking the public to stay home. In plain English, if your businesses are not related to food services or medical, you must close and stay at home. Arizona is not the first, nor will it be the last, state that will have to push an executive order in response to protecting the citizens.

The first thing that comes to mind is when the dust settles and life goes back to a version of normalcy, that I hope that the communities support these small businesses and shop local.

This coming week, with my move to teleworking and receiving a break from Incident Management Team, I will attempt to focus on my class work and have something more positive to reflect on.


Source – https://www.kgun9.com/news/coronavirus/gov-ducey-announces-stay-at-home-order-in-arizona

ENT 610 Week 2 Reflection

Truthfully, I am not as far along in my homework as I would like to be at this point. I have started on the book Understanding Michael Porter, by Joan Magretta. And I have listened to some of the radio ads but have not picked the five that I would like to use for my assignment. This week has been a trying week of most of us outside of our schoolwork, which makes me think of the program in a different light.

In the last week, I have had to keep my kids home from school, my wife has transitioned from in-class college to online, and I have worked long hours in preparation for the response of the pandemic. I am a soldier and the unit that I belong to is an expeditionary signal battalion. And in plain English, it is a unit that deploys when there is a need for communications beyond the normal infrastructure. Right now, we have personnel deployed to Europe and Africa, but this last week we were told to prepare to deploy to the west coast to assist with medical units assisting Americans in the hot zones.

It has been a long week, but the point I want to note is where my thoughts have been, the local businesses. I would be lying if I said I did not go into some of the big box stores to buy supplies to take care of my family during this trying time, but whenever I could I tried to buy from the smaller local stores. My wife enjoys wine, and if we are stuck indoors for two weeks there better be a few bottles laying in waiting. This allowed me to buy from local vendors selling local wines. We ordered care packages for some in the community from a local restaurant that would be delivering frozen meats to elderly shut-ins. I stocked up on my dog food from the local feed store.

I am not saying all of this to have anyone tell me I am doing something good; I am doing it because that could be any of us. Entrepreneurs are going to take a big hit when the dust settles on this virus. There might not be a big bailout to help with lost income. In times of crisis, some of the first things to go are leisure, luxury, and small businesses. Seeing the Las Vegas strip completely dissertated at 5 pm on a Saturday is hard to believe, but there is enough money in most of the casino’s accounts that this won’t break them. But the business owner that was just getting by might not recover.

What I guess I am trying to say is, if you can buy from the little guy right now it might make a difference. If you can’t, make sure you support them when you can.

Life is the sum of the decisions you make along the way.

As this is the first week of my master’s program, I have reflected a little on how I got to this place in my life.

I was born deaf but after many surgeries, I was able to hear, but not hearing during a key development phase, I am dyslexic. I did not learn to read until I was 12 years old and was in remedial English classes until I graduated high school. I attended some college classes in 1997-1998, but after failing English 101 three times I gave up on earning a degree.

I was tutoring me, now, wife in 2015 in history 101 and government 101 and she asked me why I didn’t have a college degree. I told her how I only needed English 101 and a Speech class and I would have enough for an associate degree. She convinced me to re-enroll in college and then she tutored me in English. With the use of Microsoft Word and Grammarly, I earned my associate degree in 2016.

After I finished with the classes in 2016 to earn the degree, my wife asked me what I planned on doing when I retired from the army. After some thought, I told my wife that I had always wanted to own a business, so I didn’t need a degree to pursue that goal. My wife pushed me to investigate a degree that might help me learn how to run a business. After some research, I found a degree that would offer classes that I thought would help me get closer to the goal of owning a business. In the fall of 2016, I started my journey into pursuing my bachelor’s degree. In the summer of 2019, I conferment of my bachelor’s degree with Summa Cum Laude honors in Business Administration with a concentration in Entrepreneurship.

I had the opportunity to finish my degree a year earlier had I chosen to forgo my concentration on only pursue a Business administration degree. Joking, I told everyone that my associate degree which was a general studies degree was for everyone else, but my bachelor’s degree was for me, so I pick what I wanted.

When I was nearing the end of my degree, I looked around at the affordability of a master’s degree that would add to the bachelor’s degree. When I found the M.E. degree at Western Carolina University, I found a degree that had the affordability I needed with the student reviews that I wanted.

This blog will be my thought as well as assignments for my pursuit of earning my Master’s of Entrepreneurship.

About Myself

I have served this great county off and on for the past twenty years in many capacities; National Guard, Army Reserves, as well as Active Duty Army. I have served in the National Guard in Alabama and Texas. I also served in the Army Reserves in Texas. While on Active duty I was been stationed in Georgia, Alaska, Texas, and Arizona. Traveling and moving have never been things that I have shied away from. The military not only taught me a job-specific training but leadership and working with teams. I have led teams as small as three people for specific tasks, and up to sixty people for larger more complex assignments. Managing many people from different backgrounds for the common goal is a challenging yet rewarding assignment.

I have attended Gadsden State Community College in Gadsden Al., Jacksonville State University in Jacksonville Al., Columbus Technical College in Columbus GA., Central Texas College (online) in Killeen Tx., Post University (online) in Waterbury Ct., and currently attending Western Carolina University (online) in Cullowhee, NC.

Earned

Automotive Collision Repair Diploma from Columbus Technical College.

Associate of Arts in General Studies from Central Texas College

Bachelor of Science in Business Administration and Management, Entrepreneurship from Post University.