Over 28 guests attended the Women and Minorities 8A Entrepreneur Event’s annual workshop at UMW Stafford Campus this past month. The 8(a) Business Development Program is a business assistance program for small disadvantaged businesses. The 8(a) Program offers a broad scope of assistance to firms that are owned and controlled at least 51% by socially and economically disadvantaged individuals.


In order to participate in the three hour 8(a) Business Program, a business has to go through a certification process. Often times this can be a confusing and lengthy process. The purpose of the workshop is to lessen the burden and confusion of going through the 8(a) certification process. Once certified, you are able to apply for federal contracts under the 8(a) Preferred Minority Business designation, and possibly receive sole-source contracts (up to a ceiling of $4 million for goods and services and $6.5 million for manufacturing).