Women in Entrepreneurship
WIE Connect

WIE Connect is a recurring Women in Entrepreneurship community-building event hosted by Origin Ventures Academy for Entrepreneurial Leadership that provides a venue for women entrepreneurs to present to a supportive community to obtain feedback on their ventures and helps women to connect to resources, people, opportunities and networks in the Illinois entrepreneurship ecosystem.

WIE Connect events include announcements with new entrepreneurship opportunities, a 10-min presentation by an entrepreneur, a 20-min interactive Q & A between the presenter and the community, and time for making connections during a mixer with light refreshments.

Apply to Present Your Entrepreneurial Venture
Women affiliated with the University of Illinois (students, faculty/staff, alumnae, EnterpriseWorks affiliates/tenants, or community members) who are working on a new venture created within the past 5 years (e.g., startup, small business, or social enterprise) are welcome to apply to be a presenter at WIE Connect.

Presentations are NOT investor or sales pitches, but should provide information that is useful for a mixed audience to understand what you are doing with your venture as well as some challenges or questions for which you would like some fresh perspective, expert advice, new ideas, or leads for help or resources.

Apply here: go.gies.illinois.edu/WIEConnectApplication

Who Should Participate?
Women and equity-minded allies (all genders) who are committed to contributing to a supportive community and increasing access to knowledge, resources, and networks for women in the entrepreneurship ecosystem are welcome. WIE Connect is for both novice and experienced entrepreneurs, students with a desire to learn more about entrepreneurship, and professionals, educators, students, and entrepreneurship ecosystem supporters who want to help entrepreneurs with thoughtful questions, new insights, expertise, or connections.

WIE Connect is NOT a formal "professional networking" event that requires a formal dress code. This is a friendly, informal community. Please join us if you want to learn, build community, and support women entrepreneurs and innovators. For questions, contact Valeri Werpetinski at werpetin@illinois.edu.