Press Release

Schumer, Gillibrand Announce $50,000 In Federal Funding For Cornell University, Ithaca College and Tomkins Cortland Community College Collaborative Program To Empower Women Entrepreneurs

Aug 19, 2015

U.S. Senators Charles E. Schumer and Kirsten Gillibrand today announced a federal grant of $50,000 for Rev: Ithaca Startup Works, a business incubator to help start and grow local businesses. Rev Ithaca is a collaborative project between Cornell University, Ithaca College, and Tompkins Cortland Community College to strengthen entrepreneurship opportunities for women in Ithaca. The federal investment was provided through the U.S. Small Business Administration’s Growth Accelerator competition.

“This investment will empower women entrepreneurs to take the leap and start new businesses with the help of local partners in Ithaca who want to see their start-ups grow and create good-paying, local jobs,” said Senator Schumer. “The Southern Tier economy thrives when small and new businesses are given the resources necessary to succeed, so I applaud the SBA’s decision to award this federal funding to Rev: Ithaca Startup Works, which will allow this business incubator to work with local institutions like Cornell University, Ithaca College and Tompkins Cortland Community College to invest in entrepreneurs and, thereby, our economy. Fighting for our small businesses across Upstate New York will always be a top priority of mine.” 

“This funding will help equip our women entrepreneurs with the tools and resources necessary to expand and start new businesses in the Southern Tier,” said Senator Gillibrand, who wrote a letter in support of the proposal. “I recently had the opportunity to see firsthand the critical services Rev: Ithaca Startup Works provides to the region’s entrepreneurs, work that will be further enhanced with this new federal investment, offering new opportunities and partnerships for Cornell University, Ithaca College and Tompkins Cortland Community College that will help create jobs, spur innovation and strengthen the local economy.”

“With our partners Ithaca College and Tompkins Cortland Community College, we founded Rev: Ithaca Startup Works to support and expand the entrepreneurial community in Ithaca,” said Cornell President Elizabeth Garrett. “We are pleased that the SBA is awarding its Growth Accelerator Prize to the women’s entrepreneurship program at Rev. Not only will this program establish new role models for women in entrepreneurship, but the program itself can serve as an example of an approach to promote diversity in the startup community. We greatly appreciate the work of New York Sens. Schumer and Gillibrand in support of economic development in the region.”

The funding will be used to assist women entrepreneurs scale and grow their businesses in the Southern Tier. It will also provide women entrepreneurs with support from committed and experienced mentors with backgrounds in entrepreneurship, sales, technology, and marketing, helping to launch additional successful women-owned companies.

The purpose of the SBA Growth Accelerator competition is to draw attention and funding to parts of the country where there are gaps in the entrepreneurial ecosystem. Each recipient of funds will be required to report metrics including jobs created, funds raised, startups launched and corporate sponsors obtained among other pieces of information.