Message from the Executive Director

Portrait of Kathryn Rudloff, Executive Director

Welcome to weVENTURE at Florida Institute of Technology's College of Business!

Our goal is to provide you, as a small business owner or potential small business owner, with the tools you need to achieve the American dream - owning your own business.

weVENTURE offers a wide range of programs and services to support the economic prosperity of our community through the growth of small businesses. We offer a customized business mentoring program called IGNITE 360, business coaching and one-on-one counseling sessions, business education workshops, technical assistance, and networking opportunities.  Every quarter we host our IGNITE 360 Pathways Business Launch Program to provide aspiring entrepreneurs a pathway to success.

We invite all women entrepreneurs and those just thinking about becoming entrepreneurs to come explore all the benefits of weVENTURE. We also encourage everyone in the community to join us at events and connect with our vast network of professionals from across the region.  Business leaders from all walks are invited to become an ally and support the mission of weVENTURE by sharing their time and expertise as an IGNITE 360 mentor.

Small business is the backbone of economic development in the United States. More than half of all new jobs created are due to small business. Women-owned small businesses have grown at breakneck pace over the last two decades.  According to research by the National Women's Business Council, women-owned small businesses grew at twice the rate of all U.S. privately held firms between 1997 and 2006, and from 2007 to 2012, the number of women-owned firms increased by 23.4%.  Since 2019 there are over 13 million  women-owned businesses in the U.S.  They employ 9.4 million workers, generating over $1.9 trillion in revenue.

Yet, despite this growth, female founders receive less than 3% of all venue capital investment dollars in the United States and continue to receive fewer business loans for lesser amounts than our male colleagues. This demonstrates the barriers that are still in place for women-owned small businesses.  It is our goal to improve access to capital via education and technical assistance to help women-owned businesses compete.

weVENTURE works with over 600 unique clients per year.  weVENTURE was recognized as an SBA's Region 4 Women's Business Center Award of Excellence in 2012, 2015, 2016, 2018 and 2019, as well as recognized as SBA's 2014 Small Business Advocate of the Year Award for the State of Florida.  We are committed to supporting female entrepreneurs and empowering them to grow their businesses.

Contact weVENTURE today and let's get to work!

Kathryn Rudloff
Executive Director

weVENTUREâ„¢ at Florida Tech
Bisk College of Business
(321) 674-7007