The Connected Nation Blog: Every Citizen Online Program Helping Ohio Small Businesses Get Online

Friday, May 20, 2011

Every Citizen Online Program Helping Ohio Small Businesses Get Online

By Amanda Murphy, Public Relations Specialist, Connect Ohio

Connect Ohio’s Every Citizen Online (ECO) program helps Ohioans learn basic computer and Internet skills for free at local organizations. Not only is the ECO program helping citizens of Ohio feel comfortable using a computer, but the program is also helping small business owners get connected, creating additional growth and outreach opportunities.

Stephen Morozowsky completed ECO training at John McIntire Public Library in March. Morozowsky is the owner of Mantis Kung Fu Taiji Academy in Zanesville, where he teaches martial arts to area youth and senior citizens.

“The (ECO) class opened up knowledge of the computer and the Internet for me,” said Morozowsky. “Now, I communicate with my students through e-mail. I also order my business supplies online. I can shop and compare prices, which I hadn’t been able to do before. It’s a great added convenience.”

Pat Homier is also a small business owner who now communicates with customers by e-mail after completing ECO training.

Homier has owned Touches of Drapery in New Bavaria for 43 years. She recently received ECO training at the Putnam County Educational Service Center.

“This (ECO class) was a God-send,” Homier shared. “I only somewhat used the computer and Internet before, but now I’m able to use it better and for many things.”

Homier mentioned a few tasks she is now able to use her new knowledge toward, including business document formatting, connecting with other businesses online, paying bills online, and researching marketing ideas. She says she looks forward to soon marketing her business online in order to reach a new generation of customers.

Anthony Wilcox, in Columbus, is creating a start-up company. He knew creating a new clothing label would be difficult without utilizing the Internet. Wilcox received ECO training at the Godman Guild through the OSU Learning Center.

“(The Internet) is new and exciting for me,” said Wilcox. “I’m contacting business investors online and creating professional presentations on the computer.”

Wilcox said the training was just what he was looking for.