Basic Entrepreneurship Program

Centro’s Basic Entrepreneurship Program is an in-person, 9-week course for individuals primarily in the idea stage of their business and who have not been exposed yet to any formal business education. The program mirrors Centro's Business Planning App - our flagship tool to help small business entrepreneurs start and grow businesses. 


  • 27 hours of in-class training on basic business competencies
  • 2 hour one one one coaching session with one of our experienced business trainers
  • Learn and gain live feedback within a cohort of 6 - 10 diverse entrepreneurs
  • Delivered using Centro's Business Planning App
  • Led by a facilitator trained to enrich in class discussion, encourage 360 feedback, and foster critical thinking


  • Gain basic knowledge of business concepts
  • Create a basic business plan and presentation
  • Work in collaboration with a small group of other local entrepreneurs 
  • Broaden your professional network


  • Display a genuine dedication to starting or growing a business
  • Seek profit and provide social benefit to your community

Want to Apply?

Centro is offering three 9-Week Basic Entrepreneurship Programs in Oakland, CA. The program is intended for all, regardless of your level of education or experience. The cost of the 9 classes is $100, and this will include a Financial Literacy module.

begin in April 2018 | Oakland, CA

Classes will take place Wednesdays from 5:30 pm - 8:30 pm, starting on April 25

Begin in September 2018 | Oakland, CA

Classes will take place Wednesdays from 5:30 pm - 8:30 pm, starting on September 19

All groups will meet at the Centro Community Partners office on 825 Washington Street, Old Oakland.

If you are not in the San Francisco Bay Area and are interested in joining the Basic Entrepreneurship Program, find a Centro Affiliate near you. They will follow up with the details of their admissions process and any additional requirements they may have.


If you have any questions, don't hesitate to contact Hope Lehman at

Looking for an Advanced Program for Entrepreneurs?

Centro's Entrepreneur Readiness Program might be the right fit for you.

Testimonials from Former Participants

“In the Centro Basic Business Program I learned more deeply about myself and what I actually want to do with my business. I learned how to price my services in a way that reflected my value and loved the diversity of thought from my fellow entrepreneurs in the program.”
— Jorge Castro from Compliance Network - a company creating technical solutions for hospitals to be safety compliant. Age 23.
“Before I came to Centro Community Partners, a friend of mine sent me a 30 page document on how to create a business plan. I was so overwhelmed. When Centro gave me a call, I was elated to receive help. I love that the Centro Program broke down how to write a business plan step by step with direct one on one support from an experienced business owner and trainer. The Centro Program has provided me with the confidence I need to move forward in executing my dream of opening a salon in Oakland.”
— Kellie King Beauty Salon - a natural multicultural hair salon in Oakland. Age 51.
“Everyday after class, I felt like I could start a business right then and there no matter who I was or what my background was. I felt like my business idea was possible and that Centro would be there to help each step of the way.”
— Marcel Haynes from True Believer Bar - a comic book bar. Age 38.
“The Centro Community Partners Basic Entrepreneurship Program was awesome. I now have a toolkit on how to start my business - to think about where I am going with my business, how I can actually get funded, and how I can think about capital no longer in a stressful way, but in an abundant way.”
— Binta Ayofemi from Black and Brown Market - a company repurposing empty lots in urban areas with markets for black and brown makers. Age 30.