16 Jul 2021 10:33 IST

IIMB joins hands with NCW to help women-entrepreneurs

Of the 1,773 learners in the first batch, 852 learners completed the online module

The National Commission for Women (NCW) partnered with Indian Institute of Management Bangalore (IIMB) to launch an online ‘Do Your Venture’ module for women entrepreneurs. Launched in partnership with NSRCEL, IIMB’s start-up incubator and IIMBx, its digital learning initiative, the unique programme has seen active participation from over 1,000 aspiring women-entrepreneurs who have been equipped with tools and techniques for generating ideas and encouraging them to launch their own ventures.

This fully sponsored course by NCW is designed to give hands-on, action oriented, systematic, and scientific management lessons to 5,000 budding women entrepreneurs for identifying, evaluating and testing entrepreneurial opportunities.

Equal partners in workforce

NCW Chairperson Rekha Sharma reiterated the Commission’s commitment towards empowering women and said that the idea of an Atmanirbhar Bharat can be realised only with equal participation of women in the workforce.

“Socio-economic development can be achieved only when women become equal partners in the workforce. The National Commission for Women is proud to have handheld so many women in realising their dream of becoming entrepreneurs. We believe that the beneficiaries of this programme will inspire other women to become self-reliant thereby leading to larger involvement of women in India’s workforce. Together, we will realise the dream of an Atmanirbhar Bharat, led by women,” said Sharma.

Prof Venkatesh Panchapagesan, Chairperson, NSRCEL reflected upon the challenges posed by the pandemic and how the programme has encouraged women to turn this threat of Covid-19 into an opportunity.

“The past year has challenged many entrepreneurs, especially women running small businesses. Having supported thousands of women entrepreneurs over our twenty-year journey at NSRCEL, we also knew that women don’t give up easily. So, when NCW came to us with the idea of nurturing and hand-holding early-stage women entrepreneurs through this pandemic, we welcomed the opportunity," said Prof Panchapagesan.

Right resources

NSRCEL at IIMB has also successfully completed its course run for the first batch of NCW’s Empowering Women through Entrepreneurship programme. Of the 1,773 learners in the batch, 852 learners completed the online modules of ‘Do Your Venture,’ setting a new benchmark of a 48 per cent completion rate, where globally most MOOCs have completion rates of less than 10 per cent.

A personal approach was taken to encourage participants to finish submissions. The participants were also encouraged to leverage the peer network through discussion forums and other online tools. NSRCEL and IIMBx took necessary steps to reduce the dropout rate by sharing weekly digests, regular announcements, handouts, and reminder emails.

The six-week programme, delivered by NSRCEL and IIMBx, has been conceptualised to integrate a strong action philosophy in developing entrepreneurial ideas from common paths taken by successful entrepreneurs, including idea creation and evaluation. The programme is a part of NCW’s nationwide initiative that aims to nurture women entrepreneurs and help them to scale their activities.