Introduction to Economic Development (“Keys”)

The Keys Course will be held October 16-19, 2023 via a Hybrid Format: In-Person at Fresno State University or Virtual (Zoom)*

Registration will open in late Spring 2023

*Registrants must choose one of the two training options. Please note that if fewer than 10 participants opt for in-person instruction, the course format will be switched to solely virtual for ALL ATTENDEES.*

Sample Agenda
Location & Dates, Registration & Payment

General Course Information

CALED is partnering with the California Academy for Economic Development, the California State University, Fresno, the Division of Continuing and Global Education, and the University Business Center, to bring you the Introduction to Economic Development Certificate Program (also known as the “Keys” course). This certificate program is designed as an introductory course for people who are generally interested in knowing more about how local economic development works, as well as for those people whose responsibilities include economic development assignments.

Four days of everything you ever wanted to know about economic development. Take advantage of this in-depth interactive opportunity to discuss all aspects of economic development, including strategies, marketing, financing, incentives, business retention, business recruitment and resources. Attendees will get the opportunity to receive a professional certificate of completion in local economic development.

The course instructors and presenters are practicing professionals in local and state economic development who bring a great mix of knowledge and practical experience to the course insuring a large dose of reality. This is the only course of its kind offered in California and is your once a year opportunity to learn more about economic development.


In order to receive full IEDC certification credit for this course and a certificate indicating course completion, participants must attend the entire course and stay through the final session on the last day. Please make travel plans accordingly. Click on the following link for FAQ on Certification and Education

Additionally, in order to receive a mailed copy of a Certificate of Completion, attendees must complete the final summary exam.  

Course Topics Include:

  • How to market your community
  • Developing an economic development strategy
  • Basic and advanced financing techniques
  • Pros and Cons of using incentives
  • Business retention, expansion and creation techniques
  • Community assessment and planning
  • Marketing & Attraction
  • Redevelopment
  • Entrepreneurship & Small Business Strategies
  • Ethics and Economic Development

Who Should Attend:

  • Candidates for ACE certification – Accredited California Economic Developer (ACE)
  • Candidates for IEDC certification
  • Professionals new to the field of economic development
  • Anyone who wants to learn the basics of economic development
  • Practicing ED professionals who want a refresher course on the basics
Introduction to Economic Development Certificate Program
Keys to Successful Economic Development
October 16-19, 2023

Registration Check-in is from 8:00am-8:30am

TENTATIVE AGENDA (Times subject to change)

Monday, 8:00am-5:30pm 

  • 8:00-8:30am Check-In
  • 8:30am-10:00am Welcome, Introductions
  • 10:00am-12:00pm Managing an Economic Development Organization
  • 12:00pm-1:00pm Lunch
  • 1:00pm-3:30pm Strategic Planning
  • 4:00pm-5:30pm Networking & Welcome Reception

Tuesday, 9:00am-4:45pm

  • 9:00am-9:30am Morning Welcome & Recap
  • 9:30am-11:30am Economic Development Finance
  • 11:30am-12:30pm Lunch
  • 12:30pm-2:30pm Real Estate Development and Reuse
  • 2:30pm-2:45pm Break
  • 2:45pm-4:45pm Community Economic Development

Wednesday, 9:00am-4:45pm 

  • 9:00am-9:30am Morning Welcome & Recap
  • 9:30am-11:30am Workforce Development
  • 11:30am-12:30pm Lunch
  • 12:30pm-2:30pm Business Retention & Expansion
  • 2:30pm-2:45pm Break
  • 2:45pm-4:45pm Marketing & Attraction

Thursday, 9:00am-4:30pm 

  • 9:00am-9:30am Morning Welcome & Recap
  • 9:30am-11:45am Entrepreneurship & Small Business Development Strategies & Innovation
  • 11:45am-12:30pm Lunch
  • 12:30pm-2:30pm Ethics & Economic Development
  • 2:30pm-2:45pm Break
  • 2:45pm-3:45pm Introduction to Economic Impact Analysis
  • 3:45pm-4:30pm Q&A, Wrap Up, & Exam

**Agenda is subject to change**

Location & Dates:

October 16-19, 2023

The program is planned to be held in a hybrid format either in-person at the University Business Center (part of the Craig School of Business at Fresno State) or via a virtual format (Zoom) based on meeting minimum in-person attendance requirements.*

The University Business Center is located at 5245 N Backer Ave., Fresno, CA 93740-8001 (between Shaw / Barstow taking the Woodrow Avenue entrance).

*Registrants must choose one of the two training options. If fewer than 10 participants opt for in-person instruction, the course format will be switched to solely virtual for ALL ATTENDEES*

[To be updated Spring 2023 with current information.] For in-person attendees, a special room rate will be reserved for the University Business Center/Keys Course event and subject to availability.  When making your reservation, advise them you would like the KEYS Course Student rate group discount and if you are a smoker or nonsmoker.

Member rate is $900* (you must be the listed member in CALED)
Nonmember rate is $1,000* (includes one-year Associate Membership in CALED)

Please make check payable to California State University Fresno, Foundation

Send check payment to:

Economic Development Certificate Program
University Business Center
Craig School of Business
5245 N. Backer M/S PB 5
Fresno, CA 93740-8001

To pay by Visa or Mastercard, please call 559-278-2352

*Scholarships are only available to CALED Members in good standing. You must meet all the Scholarship Criteria in order to be considered. To apply for a scholarship, please click here for information and application deadline.

For more information and/or to sponsor this event, please contact Helen Schaubmayer, at 916-448-8252, ext. 16.

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