Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)


Human Resource Education and Workforce Development

Document Type



Small businesses are the backbone of the American economy, and entrepreneurship is of critical importance to women because it provides a means to becoming self-sufficient, in charge of one’s own career path, and as a way to rise about the “glass ceiling” of the corporate world. Women who perceive themselves as having the necessary skills and knowledge to start their own companies have a higher likelihood of starting a business than those who do not. Therefore, it is important to understand the training needs and perceptions regarding the efficacy of entrepreneurship training programs specifically targeted to women. The primary purpose of this study was to determine the influence of selected demographic characteristics and business related variables on perceptions of entrepreneurship training effectiveness among women and to compare the perceptions of training effectiveness by whether or not the participants were business owners. This study was conducted through an analysis of archival data collected from participants in the Women in Business workshops offered by an entrepreneurship institute in a College of Business at a large research institution located in the southeastern portion of the United States. Findings revealed there were very positive perceptions regarding the effectiveness of the program on the part of most participants, both business owners and non-business owners. However, analysis of qualitative data collected in the study identified issues and important factors not found in the quantitative data. Some of those factors included importance of familial support and the role of a female mentor. Based on the findings, the researcher concluded that having a female mentor is important to all Women in Business attendees as is support from family members. The researcher recommended that mentoring, both in terms of finding a female mentor and becoming a mentor for other women preparing to become entrepreneurs, become a central component of the Women in Business training program.



Document Availability at the Time of Submission

Release the entire work immediately for access worldwide.

Committee Chair

Burnett, Michael F.