Tisha Skinner, owner of multiple Smoothie King franchises in Baltimore, snaps a selfie with her graduation certificate from the Goldman Sachs 10,000 Small Businesses Baltimore program during a ceremony held June 7.
The training and financing program, hosted at Johns Hopkins, provides budding entrepreneurs a practical business education, support services, and access to capital—resources that were especially needed during the coronavirus pandemic. "Being a small business owner, I sometimes feel like I'm on an island by myself," Skinner told Forbes. She's no stranger to the challenges of an uncertain financial market: during the Great Recession, she was forced to file for bankruptcy. When the COVID-19 pandemic began to upend large swaths of the American economy, she was able to use the resources the 10,000 Small Businesses program provided to secure grant funding from the Paycheck Protection Program and Restaurant Revitalization Act. "Having the Goldman Sachs program there to help me think through decisions and make the right ones was a huge help...it renewed my confidence."