SFU VentureLabs help students become future-ready in pilot entrepreneurial placement program

Experience Ventures, powered by the Hunter Hub for Entrepreneurial Thinking at the University of Calgary, is a bridge between today’s needs and tomorrow’s challenges. Motivated students want to break into the startup world to gain meaningful experience and startups want to identify early talent to join their teams. However, there was a gap between eager students and the innovation community, until now. 

The pilot will run until March 2022 and is funded in part by the Government of Canada’s Innovative Work-Integrated Learning Initiative. At SFU the novel program is led by SFU VentureLabs, an award-winning accelerator for science, technology, and innovation-based companies with strong potential to scale up.

“At VentureLabs, we often hear from the CEOs their struggles to find early talent with the entrepreneurial mindset,” says Virginia Balcom, executive director, SFU VentureLabs. “As SFU’s flagship accelerator, we’re in the perfect position to match talented students with growing startups through Experience Ventures.”

“SFU was recognized in 2021 as top three in the world university rankings for entrepreneurial spirit. Experience Ventures’ paid entrepreneurial thinking places will allow SFU students to expand their learning beyond the classroom and seize the future with the right skills.” 

What is an entrepreneurial thinking placement?

An entrepreneurial thinking placement is a structured, short term paid opportunity for students at a startup or venture. The placement will help students develop and apply innovative thinking skills, helping them become future ready.

How it works

Students can apply for entrepreneurial thinking placements facilitated by SFU VentureLabs, through Experience Ventures, from now until March 2022. The two types of placement offers in the pilot program at SFU include projects and students-in-residence. Students in a project placement will work on a specific project for one company. Students-in-residence selected by VentureLabs receive unique opportunities to work with several companies over the course of a term.

Students are paid through Experience Ventures and in return, participating companies only need to provide in-kind support, such as time or expertise. Companies affiliated with SFU VentureLabs, Coast Capital Savings Venture Connection, and SFU innovation partners are welcome to apply to Experience Ventures for complimentary student hours.

Students and companies looking to make an innovative impact can learn more at venturelabs.ca/experience-ventures.

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