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Thunderbird School of Global Management Introduces DreamBuilder Program in USA

Freeport-McMoRan Foundation’s International Women Entrepreneurs Training Program Launches Domestically in association with Small Business Administration

Glendale, Ariz., March 4, 2015  In conjunction with the celebration of International Women’s Day on March 8, the Thunderbird School of Global Management, a unit of the ASU Knowledge Enterprise at Arizona State University, will launch an English-language version of the Freeport-McMoRan DreamBuilder (www.dreambuilder.org) program.  Designed for women entrepreneurs who want to start or grow a small business, the online learning program will be available throughout the United States in association with the Small Business Administration beginning immediately.

DreamBuilderThe 13-module program funded and initiated by the Freeport-McMoRan Foundation and supported by Bluedrop Performance Learning, is the second version of DreamBuilder.  The program was initially launched in Spanish and has helped thousands of women in Latin America.  Both version of the program are built on Thunderbird’s extensive 10-year history of training women entrepreneurs. Learn more at:https://www.youtube.com/user/DreamBuilderFCX.

“This is a Freeport-McMoran inspired program developed by Thunderbird, focused on emerging markets,” said Dr. Allen Morrison, CEO and Director General of the Thunderbird School of Global Management.  “DreamBuilder has been tremendously successful in Latin America and we are excited about what it can do to help women throughout the United States. We take pride that it is a program advanced through our social impact initiative, Thunderbird For Good. It is just one example of how Thunderbird leverages our expertise and builds partnerships with industry leaders to address global challenges.”

DreamBuilder guides students through a program augmented by animation, interactive exercises, and video testimonials of successful entrepreneurs. A Business Plan Generator, embedded in the program, creates a personalized, editable business plan, individually crafted by each student as a part of her graduation from the program. The program is not only relevant for women who are thinking of starting a small business, but also those who already own small or medium-sized businesses and simply need additional support to increase their success and income. While anyone can access the program online, women who choose to engage in it through a local non-profit organization will find additional support             

“One of the aims of DreamBuilder is to reach women entrepreneurs in rural and underserved communities, including mining communities, with an opportunity to turn their aspirations of starting or growing their own business into reality and ultimately increase their economic prosperity,” said Tracy Bame, Director of Social Responsibility & Community Development for Freeport-McMoRan and President of the Freeport-McMoRan Foundation.  “We believe investing in women in general and in this program specifically is an accelerator to overall community economic development. When women own businesses and increase their incomes, the overall economy of a region grows, creating healthier, more prosperous and sustainable communities.,” Bame added.  

Arizona State University President Michael Crow said the university’s support for the program and its partnership with Freeport-McMoRan, Inc. and the Small Business Administration is another example of the potential of ASU’s union with Thunderbird.

“This is the correct mission leveraging the unique skills of Thunderbird, the scope and focus of Arizona State University, the commitment of a global private sector partner like Freeport-McMoRan and the realization that our common goal to educate the world includes a focus at home,” said Crow. “It also reflects a shared commitment to the potential of women across the globe, who do more than half of the world’s work but account for only about 10% of the world’s income.  Continuing education helps close that gap and we are pleased to help support and advance the vision.”  

 The Small Business Administration’s Office of Women’s Business Ownership will serve as a point of coordination for the program.  The office oversees a network of Women’s Business Centers (WBCs) throughout the United States and its territories assisting women who are economically or socially disadvantaged. Women are offered comprehensive training and counseling on a vast array of topics in many languages to help them start and grow their own businesses.

“DreamBuilder is a tremendous asset for the more than 100 Women’s Business Centers and women entrepreneurs across the United States,” said Bruce Purdy, Deputy Assistant Administrator, Office of Women’s Business Ownership, Small Business Administration. “We are thrilled to partner with Thunderbird School of Global Management on this innovative program.”

DreamBuilder organizers believe the training program that has been so beneficial to women entrepreneurs abroad will be equally well embraced in the United States.

“Taking something we’ve had success with internationally and putting it to use in the United States is the logical extension of an effective educational program and it is exactly what we should be doing,” said Kellie Kreiser, Executive Director of Thunderbird for Good. “This is an innovative program focused on a category of learners who need engaging, practical tools. When they complete our program, not only do they have the knowledge of how to start a business, but they also walk away with a business plan they can implement.” 

The English-language DreamBuilder is part of a 2013 Commitment to Action made by the Freeport-McMoRan Foundation at the Clinton Global Initiative and a federal commitment announced at the 2013 Equal Futures Partnership meeting in New York.  

About Thunderbird School of Global Management
Since its inception in 1946, Thunderbird has focused exclusively on educating global leaders in the intricacies of international management. Thunderbird is a leading international business school with nearly 70 years of experience in developing leaders with the global mindset, business skills and social responsibility necessary to create real, sustainable value for their organizations, communities and the world. Dedicated to preparing business school students to be global leaders and committed global citizens, Thunderbird was the first graduate international business school to adopt a Professional Oath of Honor. Visit http://www.thunderbird.edu

About Arizona State University 
ASU is a New American University, promoting excellence in its research and among its students, faculty and staff, increasing access to its educational resources and working with communities to positively impact social and economic development. Visit http://www.asu.edu

About Freeport-McMoRan Inc. 
Freeport-McMoRan is a leading international natural resources company with headquarters in Phoenix, Arizona. Freeport-McMoRan operates large, long-lived, geographically diverse assets with significant proven and probable reserves of copper, gold, molybdenum, cobalt, oil and gas. Freeport-McMoRan has a dynamic portfolio of operating, expansion and growth projects in the copper industry. Freeport-McMoRan is also the world’s largest producer of molybdenum and a significant gold, oil and natural gas producer. The company’s portfolio of assets includes the Grasberg minerals district in Indonesia, one of the world’s largest copper and gold mine in terms of recoverable reserves; significant mining operations in the Americas, including the large scale Morenci and Safford minerals districts in North America and the Cerro Verde and El Abra operations in South America; and the Tenke Fungurume minerals district in the Democratic Republic of Congo. Freeport-McMoRan’s portfolio of oil and natural gas assets include strong oil production facilities in California, an attractive position in the onshore Eagle Ford shale play in Texas, significant production facilities and growth potential in the Deepwater Gulf of Mexico, large onshore resources in the Haynesville natural gas shale play in Louisiana and natural gas production from the Madden area in Wyoming. In addition, Freeport-McMoRan is an industry leader in the emerging Inboard Lower Tertiary/Cretaceous gas trend with sizeable potential, located offshore in the shallow waters of the Gulf of Mexico and onshore in South Louisiana. Visithttp://www.fcx.com 
 

About the Freeport-McMoRan Foundation
The Freeport-McMoRan Foundation is focused on partnering with communities to cultivate sustainable programs and projects that contribute to their enduring success. We believe our role is to facilitate productive dialogue, assist communities in self-defining priority issues, catalyze or participate in discussions on possible solutions, forge collaborations and offer opportunities for funding that contribute to a community’s long-term success.  We have characterized our efforts in community engagement as Transforming Tomorrow Together. In order to transform tomorrow, we focus on comprehensive sustainable social development including robust engagement, sharing expertise, social investing, volunteerism, and creating opportunities through our business. Further, we believe that creating vibrant communities will
 take all kinds of partners working together- communities, schools, nonprofits, stakeholder groups and our own employees. Visit http://www.freeportinmycommunity.com

About Bluedrop Performance Learning
Bluedrop Learning Networks is the global thought leader in empowering Extended Workforce Ecosystems.  Our clients are workforce agencies, foundations/NGOs, unions, workplace regulators, and educational institutes which manage the complex training needs of the people they serve.  The Bluedrop 360 platform allows these organizations to support an increasingly mobile workforce as they move between employers, training providers and supporting agencies.  The software enables clients to scale programs, automate process, create partnerships and measure results.  Our solutions help workers to manage mandatory certifications, apprentices to track new skills at work, the unemployed to get jobs, the underemployed to advance, dreamers to start businesses, and local businesses to grow
.” Visit: www.bluedrop.com