SBDC Template

Mentor/Protege Programs

The origin of mentor-protege relationships can be traced back to ancient Greece. Mentoring is building a relationship, trust, and more importantly, a commitment. A mentor-protege relationship shares important social, spiritual and personal values. It is precisely this type of support that builds a strong foundation to build and sustain a healthy business. The kind of business entity that can adapt and can react quickly to change and can develop, adjust, and regenerate itself over time.

Whether the relationship is formal or informal, the goal of mentoring is to provide advice as well as both professional and personal enrichment. A mentoring relationship is defined as one that helps and supports people to "manage their own learning in order to maximize their business performance, professional potential, develop their skills, improve their performance, and become the person they dream to be."

There are a couple of mentor-protege programs existing in Colorado which can help you fulfill that potential: 

SBA Mentor-Protégé Program
The 8(a) BD Mentor-Protégé Program is designed to help enable successful firms to provide various forms of business development assistance to 8(a) BD Program Participants. The goal of the 8(a) BD Mentor-Protégé Program is to enhance the capability of 8(a) Program Participants to be competitive, achieve entrepreneurial success, and contribute to the strength and vigor of our economy. 
ACE Mentor Program
The ACE (Architecture • Construction • Engineering) Mentor Program of Colorado serves high school young people who want to explore careers in architecture, construction and engineering. Throughout the year, the ACE program, which meets two hours per week for 17 weeks, introduces participants to building industry professions by having them plan and design mock projects on real sites and work with professionals in the design and build industries. Students also have the opportunity to work with graduate students from the University of Colorado at Denver (UCD). UCD students earn credit hours toward their degrees by participating in the program as mentors.
CU Leeds College of Business Professional Mentorship Program for Undergrads
The undergraduate Professional Mentorship Program (PMP) pairs Leeds juniors and seniors in one-on-one mentoring partnerships with experienced professionals. Mentors represent a variety of industries, functional areas, and companies and hail from across the country and around the world. Students and mentors are matched based on each student’s interests regarding industry, functional area, geographic location, career path, and hobbies. Mentors serve as coaches, advisors, and connectors, helping students expand their networks and prepare for the transition from college to career.
Denver Office of Economic Development Mentor-Protege Program
The Denver OED is launching a mentor-protege program to build capacity among minority- and women-owned businesses within the construction and professional services industries. The program will match successful, seasoned businesses with smaller, Minority- and Women-Owned Business Enterprises (M/WBE) to provide coaching on ways to compete more successfully for contracts in construction and related professional services. Proteges will receive coaching on public contract applications and contract performance, as well as a wide array of other business management topics, from strategic planning to financial management and marketing.
Department of Defense Mentor-Protege Program
The DoD Mentor-Protege Program assists small businesses (proteges) successfully compete for prime contract and subcontract awards by partnering with large companies (mentors) under individual, project-based agreements. Traditionally, these partnerships have delivered a variety of products and services specialized in: environmental remediation, engineering services, information technology, manufacturing, telecommunications, and health care. Recently, new mentor-protege agreements have focused on corrosion engineering, information assurance, robotics, circuit board and metal component manufacturing.