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Benedict College Women's Business Center receives SBA grant

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Benedict College Women's Business Center is one of 14 recipients of up to $200,000 from the U.S. Small Business Administration. 

The Women's Business Centers Resiliency and Recovery Demonstration Grants will be used to support projects that provide services and training to women-owned businesses affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. The grants are made under the SBA's Office of Women's Business Ownership.

"The growth and recovery of women-owned small businesses is essential to our nation's economy," Natalie Madeira Cofield, Assistant Administrator for the Office of Women's Business Ownership, said in a news release. "During the pandemic, our Women's Business Centers have played an integral role in meeting the needs of women entrepreneurs during an especially challenging time. As resource providers, they have been impacted by the changing business landscape and have had to pivot to meet community needs."

The grant program, with approximately $2.7 million in total funding, was open to existing SBA-founded Women's Business Centers that demonstrated innovative approaches to continue or establish support for women-owned businesses. Applicants were also required to provide counseling, technical and financial skill development, comprehensive businesses assessments and mentoring services to women interested in starting or growing a small business. 

"With this funding, we will support WBCs that have established innovative programming to increase outreach to aspiring and active women entrepreneurs nationwide," Cofield said. "We are proud to support organizations who have deep connections to small, diverse, and rural communities across the country and who understand their unique needs.”

Benedict College Women's Business Center lanched in September 2020. The Columbia school is one of just two historically Black colleges and universities to house an SBA Women’s Business Center.

The grant recipients are:

  • CWE Eastern Massachusetts - Women's Business Center, Boston
  • Women's Center for Entrepreneurship Women's Business Center, Chatham, N.J.
  • WISE Women's Business Center, Syracuse, N.Y.
  • Chatham University's Center for Women's Entrepreneurship Women's Business Center, Pittsburgh
  • weVENTURE Women's Business Center at Florida Tech Bisk College of Business, Melbourne, Fla.
  • Benedict College Women's Business Center, Columbia 
  • WEOC Women's Business Center, Fort Wayne, Ind.
  • WomenVenture WBC, Minneapolis, Minn.
  • Albuquerque Women's Business Center, Albuquerque, N.M.
  • Arkansas Women's Business Center, Little Rock, Ark.
  • Mi Casa Women's Business Center, Denver
  • California Capital Women's Business Center, Sacramento, Calif.
  • Women's Economic Ventures Women's Business Center, Santa Barbara, Calif.
  • Idaho Women's Business Center - Twin Falls, Twin Falls, Idaho

Reach Melinda Waldrop at 803-726-7542.

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