EMPOWER, the women’s entrepreneurship programme due to be delivered in the iHubs on GMIT, IT Sligo and Letterkenny IT campuses next month (May) will now be delivered fully online from June, in line with the continuing physical distancing restrictions around COVID-19.
The EMPOWER programme has been running in the Galway and Mayo GMIT iHubs since 2017 and expanded to counties Sligo, Leitrim and Donegal last year (2019) under the Connacht Ulster Alliance (CUA).
Funded by the Department of Justice and Equality and the European Social Fund, the application deadline has been extended to Friday 29 May 2020. All participants will need to have access to a device (PC or laptop) and have good broadband. Selected participants will engage online in group discussions and in one-to-one mentoring sessions. Role models will also be introduced along with new modules on Leadership and Sales.
GMIT President Dr Orla Flynn says: “In Ireland, female-led businesses remain an underdeveloped source of economic growth and jobs. As part of a drive to increase the number of female entrepreneurs in Galway, Mayo and Roscommon, GMIT Innovation Hubs set out to increase participation with the launch of EMPOWER in 2017, expanding to Sligo, Leitrim and Donegal last year. Bringing more women entrepreneurs into the economy will help improve economic growth and stability and is particularly needed in the rural and peripheral West and North-West of Ireland.”
Maria Staunton, EMPOWER Programme Manager, says: “The EMPOWER Programme is helping so many women build confidence, assess skills to implement ideas or scale businesses, and deliver market opportunities. Over 64 women in the West have completed the programme since 2017 and 146 people are currently employed by the businesses full-time and another seven part-time.”