Towson University is the new home to ATHENAPowerLink® Baltimore program
PNC Bank, ATHENA and Towson University will partner to host the yearlong women’s entrepreneurial mentorship program
By Arthur Smith on February 2, 2020
Since its inception in 2013, the ATHENAPowerLink® Baltimore program has provided mentorship to Greater Baltimore’s women entrepreneurs and their businesses.
In fall 2019, ATHENAPowerLink® Baltimore found a new home with Towson University.
ATHENAPowerLink® (APL) Baltimore will now be offered through Towson University in conjunction with ATHENA International and local business and community partners throughout Greater Baltimore. The local chapter is managed by a volunteer governing body with PNC Bank serving as the founding sponsor.
“We are excited about the program’s transition to Towson University because of their focus on women leaders and emerging businesses are a great complement to APL Baltimore, as well as being part of a great educational institution,” says Laura Gamble, PNC Bank Regional President in Greater Maryland.
A key reason that APL Baltimore is moving to TU, is because of the University’s commitment to inspiring and developing women leaders and entrepreneurs. A few examples include:
- Patrick McQuown to head up entrepreneurship: McQuown, a 20-year veteran as a startup founder, entrepreneur, mentor and educator, began his role as Executive Director of Entrepreneurship on January 29. He leads TU’s entrepreneurship strategy, which includes oversight of the StarTUp at the historic Armory in uptown Towson, as well as TU Incubator, which 40% of its companies have women-founders.
- Professional Leadership Program for Women: This cohort-based program has become a trusted resource and used by many of Greater Baltimore's leading organizations to develop rising female leaders.
- Women’s Leadership Collective: A new initiative to serve women at the high school, collegiate and mid-career levels will launch the Outstanding Young Women Leaders program. This program will provide a full year of leadership activities and events for 25 Baltimore County high school female students.
“Baltimore is one of the top cities for women in business in the United States. This makes it an ideal location for an ATHENAPowerLink® program; a program with the goal of developing women business owners while garnering support and engagement from their local community,” says Andrea Conner, President of ATHENA International. “We are thrilled that Towson University, with their history of supporting women throughout their academic and professional lives, will be hosting this program, and look forward to seeing the impact!”
APL Baltimore guides women business owners in defining and achieving tangible goals by providing them with access to a panel of business advisers. Each advisory panel is hand-selected based upon each woman business owner’s individual needs.
These volunteer panelists serve as mentors and advisors for a 12-month period at no charge to the woman business owner and, ultimately, strive to help the woman business owner achieve growth and profitability.
“At PNC, our sponsorship and participation with ATHENAPowerLink® Baltimore is one of the ways we focus on women business owners,” says Laura Gamble, PNC Bank Regional President in Greater Maryland. “Giving women business owners access to a pro bono board of advisers is a wonderful opportunity for these businesses to get the kind of advice that can really propel their business forward.”
To qualify for selection as an ATHENAPowerLink® Baltimore client business owner, a business must meet the following criteria:
- Is at least 51% owned and actively managed by a woman or women.
- Has been in business for a minimum of two years.
- Has a minimum of two full-time employees (including the owner) or a number of part-time employees whose total work hours add up to two full-time positions.
- Has annual revenues of at least $250,000 for retail or manufacturing businesses, or at least $100,000 for service businesses.
- The owner must have clearly defined objectives and specific reasons for seeking an advisory panel.
Those interested in the APL Baltimore program can visit the website, send an inquiry e-mail, or apply to join the program.
This story is one of several related to President Kim Schatzel’s priorities for Towson University: TU Matters to Maryland, BTU-Partnerships at Work for Greater Baltimore.