The AEMSA’s Mentor-Protégé Program

We are proud to offer another first for the vaping industry: The AEMSA Mentor-Protégé program.  This program is currently being developed and refined.  We all know reasonable and realistic Standards are necessary to provide greater consumer confidence for the e-liquid consumable products they purchase.

Accuracy, quality, mixing environments, etc. are all integral to the Standards, creating consumer confidence and enhancing professionalism in the e-liquid manufacturing process.  However, even though the community has many well-intentioned e-liquid manufacturers, while creating AEMSA we learned that the question “How to effectively and efficiently upgrade an operation to meet Standards” does not always have easy answers.

The AEMSA Mentor-Protégé program provides opportunities for a protégé e-liquid manufacturing small businesses to receive guidance from an AEMSA mentor for a period of time.   We respect the fact that non-AMESA member manufacturers know how to run their businesses.  Our mentors can help guide a “protégé” business towards operational and/or procedural changes needed to meet AMESA standards.

Member manufacturers have volunteered to become Mentors and help other e-liquid manufacturers, who wish to join AEMSA, on how to get from current levels of operation to meeting AMESA Standards and becoming a membership qualifying operation.

The program creates a structure for AEMSA members to assist eligible Protégé participants towards: enhancing their capabilities, fostering/establishing long-term business relationships within the industry, further developing industry-wide professional uniformity in manufacturing practices and qualifying Protégé for AEMSA membership. Research has shown that access to the right kind of coaching and mentoring significantly increases the success rate in small business, while both the mentor and the protégé benefit tremendously from their interaction.

The goal of the program is to help small businesses to be successful over the long haul, by helping them to develop compliance, capacity, enhance their skill sets and become more competitive. The mentor companies are exemplary corporate citizens, already playing a major role in community development and fostering industry-wide manufacturing standards consistency to promote consumer confidence and protection.

An AEMSA member, or community leader, must nominate Protégé candidates to be considered for the program.  Each candidate is screened according to a set of admissions criteria.

Once a business has been nominated as a candidate for admission into the Mentor Protégé program, the application process begins. The applicant must submit a complete packet containing all of the required documentation. The application process is rigorous by design, as the candidate must demonstrate the characteristics necessary to be eligible for such a life-changing business opportunity.

This process also insures a worthwhile experience for our mentors, who make such generous voluntary investments of their valuable time.  The AEMSA’s Mentor-Protégé Program is a mutually beneficial way for both mentor and protégé to become more successful and grow as effective and efficient small businesses.

This program is one of many that reinforces the Commitment and dedication our members have to creating and fostering industry-wide consistency in standards and professionalism for both consumer protection and the industry overall.

Application Process Overview

  1. Applicant is nominated for the program by a qualifying AEMSA member or community leader
  2. Applicant completes the application form and signs it
  3. Applicant submits the application packet including all of the following:
    1. Signed and completed application form
    2. Name and contact information of the nominating person or entity
    3. Basic Strategic/Business Plan
    4. Basic Marketing Plan
    5. Proof of incorporation and corporate status
    6. Letter of recommendation from nominating party
    7. Letter of recommendation from a business reference
  4. AEMSA mentor-protégé program evaluate the packet to certify the candidate’s eligibility
  5. Possible AEMSA Protégé site visit and interview for all semi-finalist (Any/all travel related expenses paid by Protégé applicant)
  6. Candidate is notified of admissions decision