Articles

New Women’s Empowerment Program Announced at Clinton Global Initiative America

June 14, 2013

Kellie Kreiser of Thunderbird, Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, Emad Rizkalla of Bluedrop and Tracy Bame of Freeport-McMoRan at the Clinton Global Initiative America meeting in Chicago, IL. on June 14, 2013.

A new commitment to provide online business training to thousands of North American women entrepreneurs was announced today at the third annual Clinton Global Initiative America (CGI America) meeting in Chicago. The program titled, American DreamBuilder: The Women’s Business Creator, is spearheaded by Phoenix-based Freeport-McMoRan Copper & Gold Inc. who partnered with Thunderbird School of Global Management and Bluedrop Performance Learning to help women entrepreneurs turn their dreams of starting or growing their own businesses into reality.

Representatives from Freeport-McMoRan, Thunderbird and Bluedrop shared the stage with Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton during the Lunch Plenary Session at CGI America today as she announced the commitment and spoke about the importance of women-owned businesses. 

“There are more than 8.6 million women-owned businesses in the United States employing 7.8 million Americans, and during the past six years when job growth across our economy has been slow, women-owned firms created 175,000 jobs,” said Clinton. “Supporting entrepreneurship among women is one of the best things we can do to grow our economy.”

Thunderbird’s philanthropic arm, Thunderbird for Good, has helped provide business training to more than 75,000 women in 25 countries since 2005. With the help of its world-class faculty, Thunderbird recently created the curriculum for a Spanish version of DreamBuilder, which Freeport-McMoRan announced as a commitment at the 2011 Clinton Global Initiative, developed and tested in 2012 and launched last month in Chile and Peru.

The Spanish version of DreamBuilder consists of 12 online business courses which can be completed at the participant’s own pace, on any computer with Internet access, at any time. Core business management topics such as business planning, market research, marketing, budgeting, accounting, financial reporting, branding, pricing, cus¬tomer service, human resources, and goal setting are covered in fun and interactive ways. The program incorporates activities, quizzes and telenovelas to teach and test comprehension of business concepts.

American DreamBuilder will be modified for a North American audience, but, like the Spanish version, will provide participants the opportunity throughout the program to capture their thoughts and ideas through directive questions that feed their answers into a business plan portal tool. At the end of the program, the participants will have generated their own actual business plans through the tool.

“We are so pleased to be able to increase our commitment to women by developing American DreamBuilder,” said Tracy Bame, President of the Freeport-McMoRan Copper & Gold Foundation and Director of Social Responsibility & Community Development for Freeport-McMoRan. “Using a technology solution to serve entrepreneurial development needs allows us to reach women more easily. By removing some of the barriers to education, like cost and inflexible class times, we hope that any woman who aspires to be a more successful entrepreneur and wants to take this program has the opportunity.”

According to a 2009 study by the Center for Women’s Business Research, women-owned firms have an economic impact of $3 trillion annually. Data from that same study also illustrated the need for new thinking and programming to support women who seek to grow their businesses. It stated that there are few solid programs that actually generate information and knowledge and engage entrepreneurs – especially women and minorities – to grow their businesses.

“American DreamBuilder will give women the skills they need to take their dreams to a new level. It will be designed to not only build business knowledge, but the confidence to put that knowledge into action,” said Kellie Kreiser, Executive Director of Thunderbird for Good.

“When DreamBuilder was launched in Chile and Peru, it was rewarding to hear about the opportunities and empowerment this program gave women who just needed to believe in themselves,” said Emad Rizkalla, founder and CEO of Bluedrop. “With our partners Freeport-McMoRan and Thunderbird, we are pleased to bring this benefit to aspiring women entrepreneurs across the US.  The program is a perfect fit for the lifelong learning management embodied in our CoursePark platform.”

CGI America brings together nearly 1,000 high-level participants, including business, government, foundation, and NGO leaders, to develop solutions to spur job creation and economic growth in the United States.

Learn more about DreamBuilder: www.dreambuilder.org.

Download DreamBuilder video for: http://www.flickr.com/photos/thunderbirdschool/9019108167/

Media can contact Virginia Mungovan at virginia.mungovan@thunderbird.edu or (602) 978-7081 for more information or to schedule interviews.

About Freeport-McMoRan Copper & Gold Inc.
Freeport-McMoRan is a leading international mining company with headquarters in Phoenix, Arizona. Freeport-McMoRan operates large, long-lived, geographically diverse assets with significant proven and probable reserves of copper, gold, molybdenum, cobalt, oil and gas. Freeport-McMoRan has a dynamic portfolio of operating, expansion and growth projects in the copper industry. Freeport-McMoRan is also the world’s largest producer of molybdenum and a significant gold, oil and gas producer. The company’s portfolio of assets includes the Grasberg minerals district, one of the world’s largest copper and gold mine in terms of recoverable reserves; significant mining operations in the Americas, including the large scale Morenci and Safford minerals districts in North America and the Cerro Verde and El Abra operations in South America; and the Tenke Fungurume minerals district in the Democratic Republic of Congo. Freeport-McMoRan’s portfolio of oil and gas assets include strong oil production facilities in California, a growing production profile in the onshore Eagle Ford trend in Texas, significant production facilities and growth potential in the Deepwater Gulf of Mexico and large onshore resources in the Haynesville natural gas trend in Louisiana. In addition, FCX is an industry leader in the emerging ultra-deep gas trend with sizeable potential, located offshore in the shallow waters of the Gulf of Mexico and onshore in South Louisiana.

About Thunderbird School of Global Management        
Thunderbird is the world’s No. 1-ranked school of international business, with nearly 70 years of experience in equipping global leaders with the business skills and global mindset necessary to create sustainable prosperity worldwide. For more about Thunderbird, visit http://www.thunderbird.edu.

About Bluedrop Performance Learning
Bluedrop Performance Learning (TSX-V: BPL) is an innovator in workplace training for individuals, corporations, military personnel and the public sector. The company was launched in 2004 and has more than 100 employees in six offices across Canada. Bluedrop is transforming workplace learning by designing and delivering training content that enables individuals to improve their skills and their employers to increase productivity.
CoursePark.com is Bluedrop’s cloud-based training delivery platform and contains more than 5,000 third-party online courses from the world’s leading publishers and subject matter experts. Launched in 2011, the CoursePark platform is growing quickly, with registered users in more than 100 countries. For more information, visit www.bluedrop.com