It seems like such a good idea: Team up business schools with local small companies in need of advice and have students, supervised by professors, provide free consulting. But a program that has successfully done just that for 23 years may fall under the budget ax this year.
The Small Business Administration hasn't requested funding from Congress for the Small Business Institute program this year. SBI doesn't reach as many people as some less expensive SBA programs, says Monika Edwards Harrison, an administrator at the SBA.
But all is not lost. In the past, Congress has restored SBI funding--and it still may. Plus, some universities plan to continue the program without the SBA's assistance, if necessary.