Lead To Win for Women – Bootcamp for Business

Later today, this girlaboutOtown will be attending an event celebrating entrepreneurs in the National Capital Region, and I’m really looking forward to it!

Hosted by Lead To Win, and sponsored by Carleton University’s Technology Innovation Management Program (TIM), this late afternoon affair at Lago on Dow’s Lake will bring together Lead To Win founders, reviewers, presenters, TIM students, entrepreneurs and the organizations that support them to celebrate their successes.  The event is timed to coordinate with Global Entrepreneurship Week, an international initiative to encourage innovation, job creation, and cooperation through entrepreneurialism.

It was just a few short weeks ago that I learned of Lead To Win, when I was approached about a blog contribution, and what I have discovered since is downright inspiring!

To begin, Lead To Win is a strategic partnership between a variety of local players committed to regional economic development, including the National Research Council’s Industrial Research Assistance Program (IRAP), City of Ottawa, City of Gatineau, and Carleton’s Technology Innovation Management  Program. Lead To Win, conceived by Carleton University professor Dr. Tony Bailetti, has been supporting start up businesses through bootcamp-style training and mentorship since 2002. Very cool.

Now get this!  In August, Lead to Win launched Lead To Win for Women, to help female entrepreneurs accelerate their businesses.  This mentorship program is open to women founded/owned firms in all sectors and offers access to the same ‘ecosystem’ of supporters that previous Lead To Win participants have enjoyed.  The program’s goal is to foster more female-led start ups, and to ensure that the Ottawa region is a great place for women to start a business!  It incorporates the bootcamp, a expert speaker series, and a blog dedicated to growing a community of like-minded businesswomen.  Also very cool.

The first Lead To Win for Women bootcamp kicked off October 25-27, and will conclude next week, November 22-24.   The six-day intensive bootcamp is intended to assist founders/owners ‘harden and strengthen’ their business opportunities, is application based, and free for accepted participants.  (Yup, FREE!) In addition to a full schedule of learning sessions – taught by some of the region’s most qualified and successful business experts – participants also pitch their ideas to  receive constructive feedback and advice.  And, from what I hear, the breadth and variety of ideas currently under scrutiny is pretty impressive!

Best news yet?  Lead To Win for Women has just opened up applications for another bootcamp, planned for early in the new year.  The deadline for applications is February 6, 2012 at 5pm EST, and qualified applicants will invited to interview Feb. 8th 2010.

Interested?  I thought you might be…

For more details, and to submit a bootcamp application, visit the Lead to Win for Women website here.

Image:  Bootcamp, October 2011. Courtesy of Lead To Win, via Flickr.

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