The Student News Site of University of Louisiana Monroe

The Hawkeye

The Student News Site of University of Louisiana Monroe

The Hawkeye

The Student News Site of University of Louisiana Monroe

The Hawkeye

EntrepreneuHer celebrates local women in business

Katherine Babin

Women entrepreneurs and business leaders were celebrated last week at EntrepreneuHer, an event hosted by ULM’s College of Business and Social Sciences. Through round table talks, panels and speakers, students learned about the importance of having strong women in leadership roles within many industries. 

At the round table talk, local female business owners sat with students to tell their stories and answer questions. Owners of Tribe31 Training, Taylor Jopling and Jo Ellen Gilliland, described their individual journeys into the fitness industry and how they joined together to start a women’s fitness center. They both discovered a passion for educating women on healthy living. 

“I wanted to become a light in the world of fitness and teach women the balance of living a healthy lifestyle, working out and having a nutritional diet,” Jopling said.  

The Tribe31 ladies worked hard to create an environment where women could feel strong in more ways than one.

“I love the community aspect that we have built, of women coming together to get stronger physically, mentally and spiritually,” Gilliland said. 

Many students had the opportunity to learn from professionals up close at the sessions. Senior computer science major Thalama Malla was excited to speak with Kathy Williamson of Will Source Staffing and Recruiting.  

“Her dedication really inspired me as she has been in her field for many years,” Malla said. “Women business leaders are important in our community because they serve as a role model, encouraging and inspiring young women like me.” 

At the panel, several esteemed business leaders from the community spoke about their passions and struggles as entrepreneurs. Some of these women included Jamie-Sheridan Crawley of Hardwood & Sheridan LLC; Hope Anderson Fruge, founder of Health with Hope; and Renee Arrington, co-owner of Great Minds Communication. 

The ladies agreed that the first step to starting your business is finding the thing you are passionate about. Then you can create a solution to the needs of the industry you want to pursue. 

Women Entrepreneurship Week Chair Elizabeth Ragland worked hard to coordinate the event and hosted it with a team of faculty from the College of Business and Social Sciences. She said she believes that it is a necessity to include women in the business world for the betterment of society. 

“Having women entrepreneurs and business leaders promotes diversity of thought, fosters creativity, drives economic growth and provides role models to students in our community,” Ragland said. “These benefits have a positive ripple effect on our community, leading to more resilient, innovative and sustainable organizations, which benefits us all.” 

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