Female entrepreneur programme gets off to a Flying Start

A programme to help female graduates create successful businesses has launched in Sheffield

More than 30 graduates from Yorkshire and Humberside have been selected to attend a programme to help boost the number of successful female entrepreneurs in the UK.

The Flying Start Programme, designed to help women launch a successful business, kicked off yesterday with a three-day residential course in Sheffield.

The programme saw more than 1,200 women compete for a place on the course, which will feature guidance by guest speaker Erika Watson, executive director of Prowess, the advocacy network which promotes the growth of women’s business ownership.

The programme follows the results of a survey by the National Council for Graduate Entrepreneurship (NCGE) among female graduates and final-year students who aspire to run their own businesses.

Eight out of 10 said their main motivation to go into business is passion, while more than 60% said they want the flexibility to work when they want to, and over half said they were attracted to the idea of being their own boss.

Dr Lorna Collins, director of Flying Start, said the programme had had an ‘excellent’ response.

“This programme reinforces the message that there are a lot of women graduates out there with fantastic business ideas and a passion to get their businesses started.

“Female entrepreneurship is high on the Government’s agenda and a key aim is to close the gap between the UK and the US, which sees a higher proportion of women start their own businesses,” she added.

“Many are attracted to the programme because it is for women only, and there is camaraderie among like-minded female graduates who will continue to support one another long after the Flying Start Programme has ended.

“They will become part of a national network of peers who help achieve success for female entrepreneurs.”

© Crimson Business Ltd. 2008

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