Wilfrid Laurier University is receiving over $1.38 million in funding from the federal government's Women Entrepreneurship Strategy (WES) Ecosystem Fund to support women entrepreneurs.
Government House Leader and Waterloo MP, Bardish Chagger made the announcement on behalf of Minister of Small Business and Export Promotion, Mary Ng on Thursday.
Laurier plans to establish three programs, which will be affiliated with the Lazaridis School of Business and Economics, as well as the Schlegel Centre for Entrepreneurship and Social Innovation.
"This new funding from the Government of Canada will help Laurier provide more resources and mentorship so more women, including Indigenous women, will have the support they need to launch their own businesses and pursue their dreams," Deborah MacLatchy, Laurier's president and vice-chancellor said in release.
Here are the programs the university will create:
- Female Founders Bootcamps - intensive one- to two-week programs in two streams - one to support female entrepreneurs in the early stages of non-tech ventures and another for female social entrepreneurs in a variety of industries
- Female Founders Accelerator - a six-month to year-long accelerator program providing space, mentorship and programming in Waterloo Region for women entrepreneurs in non-tech and social startups from across Southern Ontario
- Indigenous Women Building Businesses - a series of workshops dedicated to Indigenous women who are starting and growing businesses aligned with Indigenous culture and values
The goal of WES is to double the amount of women-owned businesses by 2025.