Women's Center Lands SBA Funding

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The Women's Entrepreneurial Opportunity Center is hosted at the Northeast Indiana Innovation Center. The Women's Entrepreneurial Opportunity Center is hosted at the Northeast Indiana Innovation Center.

The Women's Entrepreneurial Opportunity Center at the Northeast Indiana Innovation Center has received a $135,000 funding commitment from the U.S. Small Business Administration. The center provides resources to women entrepreneurs including coaching, connectivity and access to capital.

WEOC is one of two U.S. SBA-designated women's business centers in Indiana. The NIIC is matching the grant through its Ideas @ Work program, meaning total funding tops $270,000. 

The women's center says, over the past two years, it has trained and counseled 1,400 people and connected women entrepreneurs to nearly $630,000 in funding. Interim Director Tania Vanderlaan says the center is "refocusing our service area" on northeast Indiana and the I-69 corridor moving forward and tweaking the organizational structure.

"We've made great progress serving women this past year and continue to learn and improve our offerings. We are grateful to our WEOC Advisory Council, who provides input and connectivity to help accomplish so much," says Vanderlaan. "We also appreciate working with resource partners like Brightpoint, Community Development Corporation of Northeast Indiana, Fort Wayne SCORE, and Indiana Small Business Development Center."

The Northeast Indiana Innovation Center was founded as a nonprofit in 1999. It aims to help entrepreneurs commercialize technology, grow their ventures and access capital as part of an effort to develop and retain local, regional and statewide talent.

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