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Why We Need More Female Founders, and What Ari Horie is Doing About It

Breaking into tech and securing VC funding is especially difficult for women. This year's End of Semester Dinner keynote speaker and founder of Women's Startup Lab, Ari Horie, is on a mission to change that.

We’re often led to believe that there is a prescribed definition of what does and does not determine a successful entrepreneur. With so few women and people of color occupying the space, these groups are often left out of that prescribed understanding. Ari Horie, and Women’s Startup Lab--the innovative founder accelerator program she’s built--challenge traditional definitions of what success and entrepreneurship look like, emphasizing passion and authenticity above all else.

At the core of Women’s Startup Lab (WSLab) is “Hitology”, an entrepreneurial development methodology designed by CEO and founder Ari Horie with the intention of scaling the impact of emerging leaders, particularly focusing on women in the space. “Hito” is the Japanese word for “human”, reminding us that the foundation of every successful business is a group of thoughtful, authentic, ambitious humans.

"I know society says you should be a certain way, but I think [you should] stop and look at what is your natural way of being who you are." - Ari Horie, Founder of Women's Startup Lab

Hitology informs the many initiatives of WSLab. These include WiSE24, a global online startup and pitch event for women; the Women’s Accelerator, a residential program that immerses female entrepreneurs of tech startups into the Silicon Valley community; the Hito Institute, a leadership program started in 2018 to serve corporate clients by focusing on the people side of innovation; and most recently, the Women’s Startup Lab Impact Foundation, an non-profit organization started by Ari Horie in an effort to bring the services of WSLab to a wider audience of underserved women around the world. Underlying each of the initiatives of the organization is a belief in the innovative power of women and a desire to fortify that power through community--a mission that deeply resonates with what we hope to achieve through WIN.

Since its founding in 2013, Women’s Startup Lab has created a community of female entrepreneurs, investors, industry experts, and active supporters that is over 20,000 people strong. Ari Horie is living proof that all it takes to start a powerful community is one passionate mind. Her incredible work has been recognized by many across the world; namely, Ari Horie has been included in Marie Claire’s “20 Women Changing the Ratio”, Forty Over 40’s “40 Women to Watch in 2015”, CNN’s “10 Visionary Women of 2014”, Silicon Valley Business Journal’s “Women of Influence in Silicon Valley in 2015”, and recently was recognized as one of Entrepreneur’s “100 Powerful Women of 2020”. She has lectured at Stanford University and given keynote speeches at global tech conferences including SXSW. And now, Ari Horie will be joining our very own Boston College community to speak at WIN’s annual End of Semester Dinner.

WIN’s End of Semester Dinner is where community members across BC’s campus--of all different genders, majors, and class years--come together to celebrate the innovative power of women. Participants enjoy an evening of food, conversation, and giveaways, complete with a keynote speech offered by an inspiring female business leader who embodies the mission of the Women Innovators Network. We are incredibly honored and excited to be hosting Ari Horie as this year’s keynote speaker to hear about her career path as an entrepreneur in Silicon Valley, her perspective on female entrepreneurship and her advice on how to cultivate an innovative mindset.


We invite you to join us with your authenticity and passion at our End of Semester Dinner on Thursday, November 18th, from 6:30-8PM! The event is open to all members of the BC community, regardless of gender identity, major, or class year. Reserve your spot (and your dinner!) by RSVP-ing at Learn more about Ari Horie by finding her on LinkedIn, or checking out Women's Startup Lab at

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