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REF NO.: 3

SUBJECT: Atlantic universities to offer region-wide virtual events for student entrepreneurs

DATE: Sept. 17

Seven universities in Atlantic Canada are co-ordinating efforts to engage and support student entrepreneurs by hosting virtual workshops this fall.

Five virtual workshops and an additional three virtual fireside chats for female-identifying students will be hosted by different participating institutions. Students across all campuses are eligible to attend for free.

The fireside chats, titled Women Leading Startups, are in partnership with the Canadian Ecosystem Gathering and aim to provide additional support and inspiration for female-identifying students, who are traditionally under-represented in entrepreneurship. The chats will introduce students to women who have founded high-growth startups in Canada and allow them to network in a safe and dedicated virtual space.

Two of the workshops, How do I entrepreneur? and Stayin’ lean, are supported by Propel, an online accelerator for technology startups in Atlantic Canada.
The post-secondary institutions participating in these workshops include:

  • Cape Breton University
  • Dalhousie University
  • Memorial University of Newfoundland
  • Mount Saint Vincent University
  • Saint Mary’s University
  • University of New Brunswick
  • University of Prince Edward Island

Florian Villaumé, director of the Memorial Centre for Entrepreneurship at Memorial University in St. John’s, N.L., says the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic has provided an opportunity to reach more students through virtual events and by co-ordinating efforts between all the universities.

“Having most students studying online has opened new opportunities to inspire and enable aspiring student entrepreneurs,” said Mr. Villaumé. “With the support of Propel and Canadian Ecosystem Gathering, we are collectively investing in the future of student-led startups. This collaboration will create a strong connection between entrepreneurial students across the region, thus making the foundation of the Atlantic Canada startup ecosystem stronger.”

The workshops include topics such as: How do I entrepreneur?, Uncover the right idea; Stayin’ lean and Take on tech.

“Creating a culture of innovation and increasing awareness of available programming across the Atlantic region is amplified by this effort,” said Jeff Larsen, executive director of innovation and entrepreneurship at Dalhousie University. “By working collaboratively, we are able to expand our networks and reach to allow students, academics and community members exposure to the markets, opportunities and experiences that exist outside their home institution.”

The first workshop, How do I entrepreneur?, will be held on Sept. 24.

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