To celebrate Global Entrepreneurship Week, the US Embassy in Paris organized a series of outreach programs with Monica Dodi, founder and managing director of the Women’s Venture Capital Fund. Ms. Dodi has extensive experience in business in both the U.S. and France: she started four successful companies, was a co-founder of MTV Europe, the head of European licensing for Disney, and a senior executive with AOL, among other roles.
On Monday, November 17, Ms. Dodi met with a group of students preparing for entrance at SciencesPo Paris, from the Lycée de la Vallée du Cailly in Déville-les-Rouen. She shared her experience as a woman entrepreneur and facilitated a robust interactive session answering questions from the students, and encouraging them to consider entrepreneurship as a professional career.
This program was organized in partnership with 100 000 Entrepreneurs, a French NGO that works to inculcate the spirit and values of entrepreneurship in young people through exposure to successful entrepreneurs.
On November 19, Global WOMEN’S Entrepreneurship Day, Ambassador Jane D. Hartley hosted an event at her residence with Monica Dodi and women and young entrepreneurs. After an introduction from the Ambassador, Ms. Dodi discussed her experiences and explained what venture capitalists look for when considering an investment. The presentation was followed by a lively question and answer session. Members of the audience came from ADIE (Association pour l’Initiative au Droit Economique), Force Femmes, Club Entreprendre au Féminin, SciencesPo and HEC students following incubator programs, WI-Filles, and young entrepreneurs.
On November 20, the Public Affairs Section hosted a networking breakfast with Monica Dodi and French female professionals in the digital field. Participants included members of the Club Girl Power 3.0, Girls in Tech Paris, Fondation Agir Contre L’Exclusion, La French Tech, and young entrepreneurs (Cheek Magazine, Covet’Chic). The group engaged in a discussion on venture capitalism, and the barriers women face both in the tech and entrepreneurial worlds. The program was not only an opportunity for the participants to network but also to share best practices between the US and France.
In the afternoon, Ms. Dodi opened Ecole 42’s (Xavier Niel’s software development and programming school) conference series for the year. She gave a presentation on entrepreneurship in the tech and media fields, focusing on her experience at MTV Europe. The majority of the students considered launching a business. The presentation was followed by a robust Q&A session.