(Stillwater, OK) – Budding entrepreneurs hoping to start a business in 2024 can get guidance with two free classes next month. The Stillwater Public Library (SPL) and Meridian Technology Center (MTC) are partnering again for their “Starting a Business” series, with “Side Hustles” on Thursday, Feb. 1, from 6-7 p.m. and “Business Basics” on Saturday, Feb. 3, from 1-3 p.m. The classes are in person and free to attend. Registration is required as there is limited space.   

In the Thursday “Side Hustles” class, attendees will learn the steps needed to start a part-time business while still keeping their day jobs. TIME Magazine states that some of the best side hustles for 2024 include online tutoring, creating a blog, delivering groceries and starting a YouTube channel.    

Brad Rickelman, assistant director of business and entrepreneurial services at MTC, who is instructing the classes, also has suggestions, such as handyman work and selling handmade items online.  

“There are many reasons to start a side hustle,” Rickelman said. “Whether someone’s just not ready to commit to a full-time business or they’re wanting to make a little extra money, a side hustle can be the way to go.”  

Then, on Saturday, Feb. 3, the “Business Basics” class covers the steps needed to start a full-time business. According to Forbes, small, independent businesses make up 99.9 percent of all businesses across the US, and significant innovation and economic growth stems from these businesses.

Rickelman will cover essential steps for business formation and success, ranging from research to finance. He emphasizes that due diligence is key for anyone considering starting a new business venture.

“Research is always one of the first and most important steps when starting a business,” Rickelman said. “Research clientele, research products and research marketing. Doing the proper prep work will head off many first-time hurdles.”   

Community members can register for one or both classes at stillwaterok.gov/LibraryRegister or by contacting the SPL Help Desk at askalibrarian@stillwater.org or by phone at 405-372-3633 x8106. Learn more about business classes and consulting with MTC at meridiantech.edu, under the “Business and Entrepreneurial Services” menu option. 

The Stillwater Public Library is located at 1107 S. Duck St. Library hours are Monday- Wednesday, 9 a.m. to 7 p.m.; Thursday, 9 a.m. to 9 p.m.; Friday, 9 a.m. to 6 p.m.; Saturday, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. and Sunday 1 p.m. to 5 p.m.