Mentor Protege Program FAQs
- What is the Mentor-Protégé Program?
The Prince George’s County Mentor-Protégé Program is a local business development program aimed to enhance the capabilities of County-based small and County-based minority businesses (“protégé firms”) through formal agreements with large businesses (“mentor firms”) for the purpose of improving the protégé’s ability over time to successfully compete for contracting opportunities at the prime level.
- What are the benefits of being in the Mentor Protégé Program?
The Protégé will receive technical assistance, management assistance, financial assistance, business development and trade education. The Mentor can leverage the program to enter into Joint Ventures with the Protégé and pursue minority/small business set-asides.
- How do I become a Mentor?
A business must submit an application that meet the following requirements:
- Meet the County’s Responsibility criteria as defined in Section XII of the County’s Procurement Regulations
- Be in good standing with local and state agencies
- Be in business for five or more years
- Successfully completed a minimum of ten (10) projects/contracts within the same in the North American Industry Classification System Code (NAICS)
- Designate a senior-level officer as a company representative committed to a 24-month agreement with a Protégé
- Have the resources to commit to the developmental needs of the Protégé
- Understand that equal access for emerging businesses makes good sense and that partnerships with emerging businesses will enable growth for larger organizations.
- Possess the ability to provide valuable support to a Protégé through lessons learned, practical experience gained from competitively procured contracts and general knowledge of government contracting
- How do I become a Protégé?
A business interested in being a protégé should submit an application and meet the following requirements:
- Be a Certified County-based small business or a Certified County-based Minority Business Enterprise
- Designate a senior-level officer as a company representative committed to a 24-month agreement with a Mentor
- Be willing to enter into a Team Agreement and Business Plan with Mentor in order to assess the most critical areas to concentrate on for success and to identify enhancement opportunities for growth and development
- Have a positive attitude and be receptive to information exchange with the assigned Mentor
- What is the commitment to participate as either a Mentor or Protégé?
Each participant is asked to be active in the program for two years.
- How long is the application review process?
The Mentor Protégé Committee will conduct the application review process within 14 business days from receiving an application.
- How are Protégés matched with Mentors?
The Mentor Protégé Committee will review applications seeking to participate in the Mentor Protégé Program. After the review, approved Mentors and approved Protégés will be notified and the firm’s information with NAICS Code(s) will be listed on the Business Highway website to encourage development of a Mentor Protégé relationship. The Mentor or the Protégé will communicate their interest in forming the Mentor Protégé relationship that will benefit both firms. Vendors (mentors and protégés) may also form a relationship then submit their applications to the County for approval and enrollment in the program.
- Do I need to enter into an agreement with the Mentor/Protégé'?
Yes, following notification of application approval and engagement of the mentor protégé relationship, the Mentor and Protégé must enter into the Mentor Protégé Team Agreement and Business Plan
(Agreement) to formalize the relationship and agree to form a team for the duration of the Protégé’s participation in the Program. The Agreement template is available on the Office of Central Services
Business Highway website @ pgcbusinesshighway.com.
- If I am not a Certified County-based Small or Certified County-based Minority Business Enterprise by the Office of Central Services Supplier Development and Diversity, may I participate?
At this time, the program’s efforts are focused on the businesses that are certified with the Prince George’s County Office of Central Services Supplier Development and Diversity Division. To apply for certification, visit mypgc.diversitycompliance.com.
- Is there training available to be a Mentor or Protégé?
While there is no training available for this program, the program serves as a training opportunity for both the Mentor and Protégé. The Program’s objective is to improve the Protégé’s ability over time to successfully compete for contracting opportunities at the prime level.
- Is the Mentor-Protégé Program considered a joint venture?
- Can the Mentor-Protégé agreement be terminated before the expiration of the agreement?
Yes. The agreement between the Mentor and Protégé may be terminated before the expiration of the two-year agreement. However, if the Mentor is awarded a contract under the Mentor-Protégé Program, the Protégé must complete the subcontracting obligation under the contract. The Mentor Protégé Program Procedures provide additional information regarding the program and may be found on the OCS Business Highway website.
- Which County procurements will have Mentor Protégé participation requirements?
County solicitation having a potential Mentor Protégé Program requirement are posted online at The Business Highway on the Mentor Protégé tab under "Opportunities" at pgcbusinesshighway.com.