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Our History

Project Opportunity was founded on the Eastern Shore of Maryland in 2010 as an alternative to traditional employment for veterans and to combat the high veteran unemployment rate within the State of Maryland.  The strategy was to pilot the program on the Eastern Shore and if it proved to be successful to explore options to expand to other areas within Maryland.

In 2013 Project Opportunity, partnering with the Salisbury Area Chamber of Commerce Foundation, received a grant from the Wal Mart Foundation in the amount of $25,000.00 which was used to allow expansion of the program by providing courses in Annapolis, Columbia, and Southern Maryland.  Additional funding sources were obtained to sustain these classes.

We have had a total of six (6) additional classes in Anne Arundel County (including the recently concluded Spring 2019 Class); two (2) additional classes in the Columbia area, and six (6) additional classes in Southern Maryland with another class scheduled for the Fall 2019 Class Schedule.

In the Fall of 2016 Project Opportunity was contacted by the Veterans Affairs Vocational Rehabilitation Services located in Baltimore to discuss the possibility of conducting a class for their customers.  We received a $5000.00 grant from the VA Maryland Health Care System Vocational Rehabilitation Services Compensated Work Therapy Program which was used towards conducting a class for Disabled and Homeless Veterans in the Baltimore Region.  Additional funding sources were obtained to continue classes in the Baltimore area with two (2) more classes and a third one scheduled for the Fall 2019 Class Schedule.

In 2018 we were able to secure funding to conduct our first class in Prince George’s County which was held in the Spring of 2019 with twelve (12) veterans graduating.  We have our second class scheduled for the Fall 2019 Class Schedule.

Project Opportunity has been able to secure funding to sustain all the current class levels and is currently working on additional funding to expand again into the Carrol County region of Maryland.

Project Opportunity has received a total of $109,600.00 in funding since July 1, 2017. PNC and BB&T have become annual sponsors of our program. We have received grants from the Kahlert Foundation, Safeway Foundation, Rural Maryland Council, Tri County Council of Southern Maryland, Overwatch Alliance, the Lower Shore Workforce Alliance, the Anne Arundel Workforce Development Corporation and TowerCares Foundation We have received sponsorships from TEDCO, St. Mary’s County Department of Economic Development, Charles County Department of Economic Development, Calvert County Department of Economic Development, the Allegis Group Foundation, Wells Fargo, Community Bank of the Chesapeake, fraternal organizations, and private sector businesses.

Our schedule of Fall 2019 Classes all has funds on hand and we have obligated funds for two (2) classes in the Spring of 2020, one in Howard County (funding to be provided by the Kahlert Foundation) and the other in Prince George’s County (funding to be provided by Employ Prince George’s, Inc).

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Our Important Milestones

  • 2010

    Milestone 1

    Project Opportunity was founded on the Eastern Shore of Maryland.

  • 2013

    Milestone 2

    Project Opportunity expanded into Annapolis, Columbia, and Southern Maryland.

    2013

  • 2014

    Milestone 3

    Awarded Veteran Small Business Champion Award by Small Business Administration Baltimore District Office.

  • 2014

    Milestone 4

    Project Opportunity had its 100th graduate.

    2014

  • 2016

    Milestone 5

    Project Opportunity expanded into Baltimore, Maryland.

  • 2017

    Milestone 6

    Project Opportunity had its 200th graduate..

    2017

  • 2018

    Milestone 7

    Project Opportunity expanded into Prince George’s County, Maryland.

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We are currently accepting applications for upcoming Project Opportunity classes.

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Program Testimonials

Over the years it has been my pleasure to not only support through letters but also as a participant at many of the graduations for Project Opportunity under the direction of Retired Master Sergeant Joe Giordano. The Program offers a second step towards an “after action” career for those retiring from or expecting to retire from our military. I have seen first hand many of the graduates go on to very successful entrepreneurial endeavors. I strongly encourage anyone who is interested in starting their own business and learning from a very talented core of professionals to contact Project Opportunity,” said Secretary George Owings, Maryland Department of Veterans Affairs.

Project Opportunity [PO] – The ultimate roadmap to planning your business. I had a catchy name. A good idea. A career with a Fortune 500 company. What I did not have was a plan to put it all together. 13 weeks later I had a plan and have never looked back. PO, like a roadmap guided me through everything from legal set up, to financial questions that I needed to ask myself. It gave me the opportunity to present my idea before successful business professionals and receive valuable feedback and insight. I was able to listen to others in the class discuss their ideas and learn from their experiences. I cannot count the number of times I have reviewed my initial PO plan just to confirm that I am on plan and on track. All this being said. The most impressive part of the Project was the enthusiasm and knowledge of the weekly guests who gave up their time to show their appreciation for a Vet. If you are seriously thinking of starting a business I cannot urge you enough the take this opportunity and make the most of it.

Author and encore to the entire Project Opportunity leadership team led by Founder, Joe Giordano and Tiffany Davis our instructor and the entire staff. My name is Paul Vann, Founder of Wealth Building Academy, LLC based in Prince Georges County, Maryland.

After being informed of Project Opportunity I wanted to be apart of something special because I was in the first class of veteran student in Prince George’s County and I wasn’t disappointed. What I enjoyed most about my experience in Project Opportunity was the comprehensive curriculum that provided an A-Z perspective and insight on entrepreneurship to current business owners like myself and prospective small business owners who participated in this amazing program.

Not only did Joe Giordano offer this second to none entrepreneurship program, he also ensured that attendees received in depth instruction from experts in the following industries: banking, marketing, legal, commercial insurance, accounting, website development, the SBA and much, much more.

I also developed an elevator pitch for my business. In the end Project Opportunity is a priceless program because I developed a business plan and financial plan for Wealth Building Academy, LLC that was reviewed and evaluated by local business experts and for this I’m grateful, thankful and my business is moving in the right direction because of this program. Thanks Joe and thanks Project Opportunity, you rock!

Project Opportunity helped boost my confidence in being a business owner at a time  when I was facing many challenges. Upon first thought, I wanted my initial brick and mortar business to be my exit strategy from my current employment. However, after going through the training I revised my business plan and realized that there was no way upon my first endeavor that was going to happen.

The course also helped with networking as I took great pleasure in hearing former graduates share their stories and I now realize how important it is to share my own.

I share this course every chance I get and also look for the day that I can be a sponsor to provide for a fellow Comrades scholarship.

Thank you Project Opportunity!

As a “Solo Vetrepreneur” the Project Opportunity workshop provided me with everything I needed  to build a strong foundation to get my business started of right! The workshop provided everything from self-assessment tools, to comprehensive business planning, financing options, e-commerce and business networking strategies and much more! I highly recommend the Project Opportunity workshop for any Veteran who has started, or is thinking about starting a business. It is well worth the investment!

Having had a 20-year radio broadcast career, I basically know the operation of commercial radio. what i didn’t know, however, was the business side of radio. enrolling, then subsequently graduating from PROJECT OPPORTUNITY in 2017, I , now , can speak with relative authority on business fundamentals. kudos to JOE GIORDANO  and his staff.

When I started  Project Opportunity, I could have been considered a serial entrepreneur. Project Opportunity helped me to take a realistic snapshot of my skillset, resources, and passion. As a result, I ventured out from my partnerships to start my consulting business that marries my knack solving problems with helping people to achieve their dreams. One of my clients is well on her way to owning a personal transportation fleet and expanding her service options after utilizing my services. Also, having the ability to flex between income streams has afforded me the opportunity to gross over $32K in my first full year on business. Joe Giordano and the Project Opportunity team has a program that promotes camaraderie and success.

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