News – Innovation and Enterprise Centre

The latest information from the St. FX Extension Department’s Innovation and Enterprise Centre in Antigonish, Nova Scotia.

2020 Wallace Family Summer Internship Application is Now Open!

Supporting Student Entrepreneurship and Enterprise at StFX University

Innovative Enterprise Internships

The Wallace Family Summer Internship will provide StFX University (StFX) students with a self-directed learning experience that helps strengthen entrepreneurial skills through the exploration and development of their own innovative enterprise endeavour. Students who have an innovative idea and who are interested in starting a new venture, developing a new prototype or applying innovative approaches to a particular product or service are encouraged to apply. Interns receive coaching and assistance from StFX Extension Innovation and Enterprise Centre staff and faculty mentors and engage in learning activities that help them explore and develop an enterprise. Business incubation space will be provided to all interns and discussions with investors and partners are encouraged. Perhaps most importantly, interns have the opportunity to work together and participate in a learning experience for innovative student entrepreneurs – offering award winners the chance to network and be exposed to mini-seminars, guest speakers, and other entrepreneurial ideas.

The internships support full-time employment for StFX students for a 12 week period during the summer (April 27th-July 17th) period, the funding provided through the Wallace Family Entrepreneurship Fund. In 2020, there are four internships available, worth up to $6000 each, or $10,000 for a team. The internships are open to students enrolled in full-time study at StFX.

Application is made by completing this form and submitting it with the required documentation by emailed to the Extension Department at pbrophy@stfx.ca. Although not required in the application, students are encouraged to identify a faculty mentor from an appropriate area of expertise, whom they think would be a good mentor during the internship. It is anticipated that at least one meeting a month during the internship period will be required of the faculty mentor.

This year, as part of the application process, the top eight applicants will be required to pitch their idea during an Innovation Pitch event planned for March 6th, 2020. The five minute pitch will be assessed by the evaluation committee and used in awarding the internships. Further information about the pitch requirements will be provided to the selected applicants.

Applications must be submitted via email on or before the deadline of 4:30 PM on Friday, February 14th, 2020. All applications will be reviewed by a committee comprised of StFX staff and faculty and adjudicated based on the eligibility and review criteria noted in the next section.

Eligibility

StFX students enrolled in any year of a full-time program are encouraged to apply. To be eligible, students must have been enrolled in full-time studies in a degree program at StFX during the most recent complete academic term (prior to the application deadline).

Please note that the internship is also open to students who have just completed their studies but have yet to graduate; however, preference will be given to students who are returning to studies in September.

Students may not hold another student summer internship or another externally funded summer research internship (such as a NSERC USRA or NSHRF Scotia Scholar award).

Allocation of internships is based on consideration of the following criteria:

  1. Innovation and creativity: Degree of innovation and uniqueness expressed in the applicant’s New Venture proposal and at their five minute
  2. Sustainability: Likelihood of New Venture continuation and growth after the internship period
  3. Motivation: Level of motivation and desire to make the New Venture a reality as expressed by the applicant
  4. Learning goals: Relevance and contribution of identified learning goals to the development of the applicant’s New Venture
  5. Academic standing: Applicants should be in good academic standing

In addition to the internship described above, StFX will continue to promote and facilitate application to externally funded summer research internship programs such as the NSERC USRA and the NSHRF Scotia Scholars program.


GIVE Camp Application opened

GIVE: Girls in Venture & Entrepreneurship is a two-day summer camp for girls ages eight and nine. This camp will be divided into a learning and creating component, and a selling and marketing component. Students will learn the basic skills of an entrepreneur on the first day, and spend some time creating/packaging a product which they will have the opportunity to sell at the Antigonish Street Fair (Stroll the Main) the following day. GIVE will be donating a portion of their sales to a local charity.

Various games and activities will take place on the first day of the camp to teach the girls about costs, revenue, and profit. This will be important background information for them to receive prior to making their first sales to ensure that they are able to set appropriate prices for the items that they are selling.

Be sure to stop by the Antigonish Street Fair on July 4 between 10 AM and 3:30 PM to see what fun products Girls in Venture & Entrepreneurship have to offer.

 


Sandbox Discover Session 1

On October 23rd, Innovation and Enterprise Centre (IEC) interns Kelsey Bowman and Emma Logan facilitated the first Sandbox Discover Program session focusing on an introduction to human-centered design and interviewing.

A small group of StFX students attended the first of three sessions to be held in preparation for a design challenge weekend in which the IEC Sandbox students will compete against other sandboxes across Nova Scotia at the end of November, 2018.

One highlight of the session was an activity called Tag Team. Participants took a few minutes to write down some of their individual strengths and positive attributes on sticky notes. They were then given a large poster board to collaboratively create “the ultimate team member” using some of their own skills. After they created this imaginary team member, they introduced it to myself and Emma. This was a great activity to have attendees reflect on their own strengths, as well as to see how they benefit a team. It brought out great creativity among the group and many laughs were had because of it. Sandbox Discover Activity

Using the above illustration to guide their introduction, the group explained that their ultimate team member speaks multiple languages, is a great listener (hence the large ears), is wearing a watch to indicate that it has great time management skills and is never late. It has a big heart and cares for all members of the team. This team member is also educated, loves to read, and never gives up.


Joy Jars by Cameron

Cameron Bell, a junior high student and participant of the Summer Launch program, has been successfully running his business ‘Joy Jars’ all summer. He is selling jars filled with goodies, ranging from chocolate chip cookie mix, to a sock puppet making kit. Cameron sells his Joy Jars to family and friends, through Facebook, and by going door-to-door.

Cameron was able to purchase all the supplies he needed to get the business up and running by using the Summer Launch start up grant, received by all participants. Cookie mix Joy Jars sell for $10 each, and $6 for the sock puppet kit. $1 from each sale is donated to Cystic Fibrosis. Cameron’s five year old cousin has Cystic Fibrosis, which was his main reason for wanting to focus on this cause. So far, Cameron has over $100 from his summer business to donate to this charity. Donating a portion of your revenue is not a mandatory criteria of the Summer Launch program, so it is very admirable that Cameron, at such a young age, is thinking of others while making sales!

Once this summer comes to a close, Cameron will no longer be making door-to-door sales, but if anyone would like to place an order he would be happy to fulfill your request! To place an order, you can send an email to ginastephaniebell@yahoo.ca.


Keay Lawn Care

Keay Lawn Care (KLC) is a business started up by Summer Launch participant, Hilus Keay. He got the idea for his business one day when he saw an elderly neighbor outside mowing her lawn. It was a very hot day, and he said it just didn’t seem right that she had to do it herself. Hilus differentiates his business from other lawn care companies by focusing on affordable pricing and customer satisfaction. He has too often heard of businesses overcharging for this service. Keay Lawn Care ensures that the lawn is cut to the customer’s satisfaction – a job is not complete until the client is happy.

“Let KLC give your lawn some TLC”

Hilus and his company have solidified a list of full time customers, however he does still have time for one-time cuts if anyone is planning a vacation and wants to come home to a clean cut lawn, or simply would just like to not have to mow their own lawn for a change! Anyone interested is encouraged to give Hilus a call at (902) 867-1988 or (902) 870-4166. Keay Lawn Care takes great pride in offering affordable services. Prices begin at $10 to $15 for small lawns and around $25 for larger lawns. All prices are based on the size of the lawn.

When Hilus was asked if he will continue his business in the future, he responded that he will be cutting his clients’ lawns this year until they can no longer be cut. He followed this by saying that this may be due to copious amounts of leaves, snow fall, or a nuclear apocalypse, because the weather around here lately has just been so unpredictable! Hilus has been an incredible participant of the 2018 Summer Launch program. His dedication, professionalism, and charming personality shine through all work he completes.