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Sharmila Karamchandani leading the ETS class.

Last week, we welcomed twenty women into the Spring Entrepreneur Training for Success (ETS) courses in Rockville and Herndon, with businesses ranging from hair styling to stationary. Think about your first day of school, at any age… it’s always nerve-wracking, and students in the ETS class are no different.

Thankfully, the ETS trainers were able to ease some of the anxiety and pressure. Alexandra Boycheck and Sharmila Karamchandani led the class with a certain ease and grace, as if they were born into their roles as Program Director and Lead Trainer. But when Sharmila began to speak, she explained how her experience with EWI was not without its hardships and that getting to where she is now took time. Sharmila says her experience and time she put in was like she was a living butterfly. It took her time to mature and blossom into the person she is today.

One of the activities that kicks off every ETS class is when students, mentors and trainers alike write themselves a letter that will be mailed to them in five months. This practice exemplifies Sharmila’s own experience of the butterfly effect, because in five months, these women will be able to reflect on where they started and where they are now, just like butterflies start out as caterpillars and later become their beautiful and charismatic true selves. Sharmila noted that she’s done this practice for nearly ten years now, and has saved every single letter, as a reminder of her pathway to this moment.

ETS is an intensive three-month, 60-hour course in business, workforce, life and leadership skills, but these students are up for the challenge. ETS will give these aspiring entrepreneurs the fundamentals of micro-entrepreneurship, combined with the basics of financial literacy, and the confidence required to be successful. We’re excited to see how far these women will go with the help and resources from EWI and we are excited to see them turn into beautiful entrepreneurial butterflies.

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Entrepreneur Training for Success students in Herndon, at the close of the first day of class.

Thanks to EWI’s Marketing & Communications Intern, Eleanor Campbell, for contributing this piece!

The Butterfly Effect
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