The United States Consulate General in Lagos and the Ascend Studios Foundation have collaborated to launch the 2021 Academy for Women Entrepreneurs (AWE), a US government programme that assists women entrepreneurs throughout the world. The program is currently in its third year.
For the 2021 cohort, 200 people will be chosen from the 17 states of southern Nigeria. The program will also include 50 female returnees to help with the comprehensive rehabilitation and reintegration of returned migrants.
Participants who graduate from the AWE as part of this highly competitive entrepreneurship program gain automatic membership in the U.S. government exchange alumni community, providing access to a vast network of like-minded and highly regarded professionals across the country.
Women’s meaningful economic participation is integral to achieving greater security and stability around the world. The AWE initiative is a great opportunity for Nigerian women entrepreneurs to gain university-level business and management training, strengthen their networks, and grow sustainable businesses.
“Women have a key role to play in Nigeria’s future prosperity,” U.S. Consulate Public Affairs Officer Stephen Ibelli said. “As we have seen time and time again, when women do better, countries do better, communities do better, and families do better.”
The intense program, which will run from July through September 2021, will be facilitated by local business leaders. Participants will also get access to DreamBuilder, a blended business training course developed in collaboration between Arizona State University’s Thunderbird School of Worldwide Management and Freeport-McMoRan, a global copper mining firm.
Chief Executive Officer of Ascend Studios Foundation, Ms. Inya Lawal, said “We are delighted that the U.S. Consulate General in Lagos has partnered with us to implement this program, the largest yet. AWE is a transformative initiative that is helping women in Nigeria build and sustain their businesses; the opportunities that come from this program are immense.”
Female entrepreneurs interested in participating in the AWE program can apply at no cost by filling out the application form via https://bit.ly/applyawe2021.
The application portal is now open and closes on July 15, 2021.