Minnesota Department of Transportation

511 Travel Info

Civil Rights

Ensuring equal opportunity for all businesses and personnel on our projects

Training programs

Small business training programs

Classes and opportunities offered

MnDOT offers free classes and opportunities to help certified small businesses. Develop the necessary business skills and expertise to win MnDOT work. Find single classes, series of classes, and hands-on training. Apply for one-to-one mentoring and network with contractors.

DBE Business Academy - classes in a series

The DBE Academy offers a variety of business development classes, all taught from the perspective of owning a small business. In this free series of classes, gain knowledge and skills from small business experts in your field. Learn how to make your business successful and how to win MnDOT work.

Build on the skills you’ve already developed. Choose from beginner, intermediate and advanced courses in each topic area. DBE Business Academy trainings are sequenced so that you can learn in depth.

Course topics

  • Winning MnDOT work
  • The art of bidding and estimating
  • Becoming successful
  • Making money
  • Mastering QuickBooks
  • Building a viable business
  • Staying out of trouble
  • Strategic visibility

Tip: If you don’t want to commit to a training series, consider taking individual classes through the Small Business Virtual Resource Center.

Small business development classes and networking

Classes designed for the new and experienced small business owner and their staff, including professional/technical and contractor businesses. Learn to leverage your skills, increase your business capacity, position yourself to compete for MnDOT contracts and projects, and how to manage a successful project.

If you prefer to take a set training series instead of single classes, consider the DBE Business Academy courses.


  • Certified DBE/TGB/Vet-owned

Small business hands-on training

MnDOT Office of Civil Rights offers hands-on training to certified small businesses interested in pursuing opportunities on MnDOT contracts. Trainings will cover technical subject matter and allow firms to grow their expertise in highway heavy scopes of work.

  • Certified DBEs

MnDOT offers certified small businesses the opportunity to focus on:

  • Bidding and estimating for specific MnDOT scopes of work
  • Reading plans and matching scopes of work to DBE capacity
  • One-to-one technical assistance

Expand your expertise, broaden your business knowledge, and strengthen your financial literacy. Develop the skills and abilities of a business owner in construction.

Request one-to-one business assistance

Mentor Protégé

Prime contractors and Disadvantaged Business Enterprise firms establish business relationships through mentoring.

Pathways for Success is a year-long program of business support for certified Disadvantaged Business Enterprises.

  • Gain skills to build your business and help increase your success rate for bidding on or proposing MnDOT work
  • Get individualized help with business planning and marketing strategy
  • Access networking, coaching and mentorship opportunities
  • There is no cost to take part in the program


  • Must be a certified DBE seeking to work with MnDOT

How to participate

  • Applications for 2024 are closed
  • Contact Jonathan Rogers for future opportunities

MnDOT provides meet-and-greets and networking events to support certified small business in establishing and strengthening industry relationships.

  • Learn about specific contracts
  • Connect with primes and pitch your business
  • Connect with other contractors

Find upcoming networking opportunities

Visit MnDOT Advancing Equity for opportunities to

  • Increase your small business capacity in ADA construction and inspection
  • Identify projects in maintenance, professional-technical, and small construction
  • Contract for maintenance or small construction projects under $250,000

Visit MnDOT Labor Compliance for training in

  • Prevailing wage
  • AASHTOWare and CRL
  • Certified payroll
  • Month-end trucking reports

Class recordings