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Press Release

Women’s Foundation of Minnesota Awards $700,000 Through We Thrive

Women’s Foundation of Minnesota (WFM) announced $700,000 in community investments through its We Thrive fund to support wealth-building through education and entrepreneurship.

In addition to renewing two grants in higher education, WFM awarded two $150,000 grants to support women entering high-wage, high-demand fields, and roles by obtaining certificates, associate’s, and bachelor’s degrees in programs such as welding, information technology, auto mechanics, engineering, robotics, architecture, and other STEM-related fields.

To support wealth-building and entrepreneurship, WFM awarded a $100,000 grant to the Neighborhood Development Center (NDC), launching the second phase of We Thrive.

A program in WFM’s impact area of economic justice, We Thrive focuses on wealth-building to seed, nurture, and champion asset-building solutions for economic justice.


Dunwoody College of Technology | $150,000 (Minneapolis) – For the second year, funding supports Woman in Technical Careers (WITC), a two-year technical degree program that supports women and nonbinary students through career placement and wraparound services. Students find success through need-based scholarships to cover tuition and/or childcare, a cohort model, mentorship, intensive advising, scholarship assistance, and stipends for books and childcare.

Friends of Saint Paul College | $150,000 (St. Paul) – To launch the iLead program for women, BIPOC women, and gender-expansive students. Participants design the program and inform the supports that are offered in a cohort model of educational equity and success. The program will offer a holistic approach that encompasses a wide range of personalized support services, such as leadership development, mentoring, cohort advising, and culturally relevant programming.

Minnesota North College | $150,000 (Hibbing) – For the second year, funding supports EMPOWER, a program for low-income women in rural Minnesota to build educational pathways in high-wage and high-demand training programs where women are currently underrepresented. EMPOWER has expanded educational and supportive services such as childcare, transportation, mentorship, partnerships with industries, application assistance, and connections to other campus programs for academic and social supports for women in northern Minnesota.

Minnesota State Community and Technical College | $150,000 (Fergus Falls) – To enhance student engagement and support systems through Project STEER, which stands for “Striving Toward Equitable Engagement and Retention.” Led by a Student Retention Taskforce, the support will increase efforts and outcomes by providing access to wraparound services such as laptops, transportation, mental health services, career counseling and exploration, and childcare.

Neighborhood Development Center (NDC) | $100,000 (St. Paul) – To provide Black and Latina Opportunity Connect (BLOC) Booster, a pre-phase for Black and Latina women in search of opportunities to be on a pathway to entrepreneurship. Black and Latina Opportunity Connect (BLOC) – is a 9-12 month structured intensive program, with individualized one-on-one coaching and cohort support for Black and Latina women entrepreneurs. Neighborhood Development Center (NDC) is a nonprofit organization that offers training, lending, and technical assistance to inner-city entrepreneurs in Saint Paul and Minneapolis.

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