Family and Private Business Certificate Courses

The Carl H. Lindner College of Business at the University of Cincinnati offers a certificate in family and private business to its undergraduate students.

In partnership with the Goering Center, the courses in the certificate are now being made available on a limited basis to non-UC students (i.e. non-matriculated students on the main, West Campus). This is a very unique opportunity, as individuals enrolled will earn undergraduate college credit for successful completion of each of the courses. UC is the only university in the area offering such an opportunity for family or privately-owned firm personnel, and one of only two in the United States.

The initial target market for these non-matriculated students includes family members, both working and non-working in the firm, non-family employees/managers, and children of family or privately-owned firms attending college elsewhere who may wish to take these courses during summer break.

The three-credit-hour semester courses include a course in the unique management issues faced in family and privately-owned firms, a course designed to cover all the important financial issues faced by such firms, a course in the legal aspects of private firms, and finally a choice of an entrepreneurship elective. Once enrolled, the non-matriculated student may choose to take only one course of interest, or pursue all four for a certificate in family and private business. All courses are offered on West Campus once per week in the evenings, so that those who are employed can more easily participate.

Because of limited seats available, priority will be given to Goering Center members desiring to take courses, but everyone is encouraged to apply.


To apply, fill out the basic data form, copy it, and fax or email it to Sidney Barton, PhD at 513-556-4891. He will review the application and notify you of the status.

Once approved, the Registrar's office will contact you by email with your new UC ID and a username necessary for online registration. A special enrollment packet will also be emailed with specific certificate requirements and information on accessing the online registration/fee payment information available via UC's One Stop website.

Upcoming courses

Please contact Professor Sidney Barton at for information.

Frequently asked questions

What courses make up the Family and Private Business Certificate?
Three courses are required for the certificate plus one elective. The required courses include: ENTR 4010: Management of Closely-held and Family Business, ENTR 4060: Financial Management in Privately Held Firms, and BLAW 4035: Legal Aspects of Entrepreneurship. The additional course is an elective that may be taken from the existing Entrepreneurship course offerings. Of particular relevance would be ENTR 5010: Corporate Entrepreneurship.

Who may take these courses?
Any adult may take these courses. Once the applicant is accepted by Professor Sidney Barton, the program director, the applicant may enroll in the desired courses. You do not have to be a current student at the University of Cincinnati.

Who should take these courses and why?
It is recommended that anyone involved in a family or privately-owned firm who wishes to understand better how to manage, work in, own, or offer services to a family or privately-owned firm would benefit from taking these courses. This could be family members working in the business or preparing to enter, as well as non-family employees and managers.

What are the prerequisites?
There are no formal prerequisites for admission to the program. However, some exposure to business education or relevant working experience will be helpful. (See the answer to "How do I apply?" below for more information.)

Where are courses offered?
Classes are offered at Lindner Hall on the University of Cincinnati campus.

How much do they cost?
Tuition is the same as what current UC undergraduates pay. For in-state students, the cost is roughly $1,500 for a three-credit-hour semester course.

How do I apply?
See "Applications" above.

When are the courses offered?
Courses are all offered once per week in the evenings from 6:00 to 8:30 p.m.

Do I have to take all the courses if I am accepted into the program?
No. You may take any of the courses you like, but you will only earn a certificate if you take all four courses.

Is priority given to applicants from firms who are Goering Center members?
Yes. Because these courses are offered to UC students as well as non-matriculated students, seats in the classes are limited. Obviously, current UC students receive priority. However, in filling the remaining seats, members of the Goering Center will have priority over non-Goering members.

May students enrolled in other universities take these courses?
Yes. In fact, we envision students of family firms who return home for summer semester and are working during the day, may desire to take one or more courses during the summer. We suggest that students may want to transfer these courses for credit in their home university. Depending on the field of study, their home university may count these courses toward their degree. This will vary with the circumstance of each student, but could be an added bonus for such students.

When can applications be submitted?
Applications may be submitted immediately.