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Black Girl Ventures
Categories: Course Design

Black Girl Ventures

Black women have been starting businesses faster than any other racial group. Even though businesses owned by Black women have grown 164% since 2007, they are still struggling to gain access to capital.  Shelly Bell, founder, and CEO of Black Girl Ventures (BGV), aims to change that.   BGV creates access to capital at 13 BGV U.S. chapter locations, using crowdfunding and community for Pitch events. Pitch competitions are like “Shark Tank", where everyone's a shark. The audience votes with their dollars for the Black/Brown woman founder they favor.

BGV partnered with WIDS to develop a curriculum for a nine-month fellowship. The fellowship course, Jetpack for Leaders, will expand the capacity of early-stage entrepreneurs - and strengthen the ecosystems of Black/Brown women founders.

With Bell as the subject matter expert, WIDS created teaching and learning plans for the asynchronous and synchronous online fellowship course. This included:

  • Course outcome summary with competencies, learning objectives, assessment strategies, and assessment criteria
  • Learning activities
  • Learning materials and worksheets
  • Links to additional reading/videos
  • Assessment activities with self-checks
  • Facilitator discussion topics for synchronous video meetings
  • Directions for online course implementation aligned with learning and assessment activities

The Jetpack for Leaders course starts in March 2021. During that time, fellows will be matched with peers in their city. In addition to working through the online course, participants will meet with industry leaders, host a virtual BGV Pitch competition in their city, and develop their entrepreneurial ecosystems.

BGV fellowship participants use an “each one, teaches one” model for growing the long-term entrepreneurial knowledge and sustainability of Black/Brown women founders. By cultivating local leaders, BGV enriches communities and creates opportunities for thriving entrepreneurship.

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