Montana Libraries SPARK: Entrepreneurial Support at the Library

Montana Libraries SPARK Logo

About the Entrepreneurial Support in Libraries Program:

Montana public libraries have partnered with Accelerate Montana Rural Innovation Initiative (AMRII) to provide entrepreneurial support to aspiring small business owners in their communities. Participating libraries will receive training on how to support early-stage entrepreneurs, and will then design a program to provide this support to their patrons.

This program is part of the the Montana Libraries SPARK initiative, a state-wide initiative for public libraries to provide economic development support to Montanans across the state. Our goals for the Entrepreneurial Support in Libraries Program are that:

  • Trained libraries offer the entrepreneurial support and services to their community at the end of the class
  • AMRII and participating libraries help connect rural entrepreneurs across the state
  • Libraries connect with and supplement ongoing entrepreneurial support efforts in their communities

If you have any questions about this program, please contact Amelea Kim at akim@mt.gov. For information about our partner in this program, Accelerate Montana Rural Innovation Initiative (AMRII), please visit the AMRII website.

Librarian Training Curriculum

The training curriculum for librarians consists of 5 self-paced modules delivered through Moodle with online discussion sessions every two weeks to cover each module's materials. Here are the module topics:

  • Module 1: Introduction to Entrepreneurship/Small Business
  • Module 2: Providing Entrepreneurial Support - GUIDES Framework and Community Assessment
  • Module 3: Entrepreneurial Support - Information Pathways
  • Module 4: Identifying Startup and Business Types
  • Module 5: Putting Things Into Practice

Participating Libraries

Januay 2021 Cohort

  • Harlem Public Library
  • Belgrade Community Library 
  • Lewis and Clark Library - Lincoln Branch
  • Bitterroot Public Library
  • Chouteau County Library

May 2021 Cohort (TBD)

This program is open to any library that is interested in participating. If you would like more details on the next training cohort, please contact Amelea Kim at akim@mt.gov