The St. Francis Xavier Extension Innovation and Enterprise Centre administers the Wallace Family Entrepreneurship Fund. Students who have an enterprise 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 for a summer internship. Interns receive coaching and assistance from StFX staff and faculty mentors and engage in learning activities that help them explore and develop an enterprise venture. The internships support full-time employment for StFX students for a 12-week period during the summer (April-July).
Maxwell Gauthier and Adam Starr
Project Name: Drastic, Scholastic, Thermoplastic (DST)
Max and Adam are aiming to create and integrate a fully sustainable recycling program at St. Francis Xavier University, one that repurposes plastic by recycling it into tangible products. Through this project, Max and Adam also hope to fuel education and innovation by introducing a unique and unconventional alternative to traditional recycling. The solution involves redefining the way people and students (the major target market) recycle by providing a service, on StFX campus, where students can bring their plastic waste to be shredded, melted, and smelted into different products.
The Shredder, Extruder, and Injection machines can create anything from a kitchen set to foundational materials (bricks, support beams etc.) for a house. Blueprints for these machines can be found online from a company called “Precious Plastics”.
“We all know the common mantra ‘reduce, reuse, recycle’ but more often than not, people skip the reduce and reuse aspect and jump right into traditional recycling,” Max and Adam say. “We believe that through this project, we would be integrating a unique way to reuse and recycle plastic in a sustainable manner.”
Project: International Student Retention
Anamika plans to create an online community for the international students to share experiences and learn about the university and university life through an online platform that has multiple modes of interaction. The platform will have the capacity to post short videos, podcasts, and blogs created by current students to inspire and motivate other students. The platform will also encourage mentorship between students and between students and professors via a social platform where students can ask questions about the university and have their questions answered by others who have more experience. Most importantly the platform will supplement, in an innovative way, the university’s effort to reach out and communicate with newly arrived students, and offer the potential to address the needs and questions students have.
“Students are able to learn and explore new ideas through other students’ experiences,” Anamika says. “If the platform is successful it will lead to higher international students retention rates for the universities.”
Project: Improving Accessibility
As an inclusion activist, Kerilyn is looking to consult with organizations, businesses, and municipalities in a consultant roll to improve accessibility. Kerilyn’s pilot project will focus on St. Francis Xavier University (StFX) campus. Accessibility on StFX campus is an ongoing problem, as it can be a challenge for people with and without physical disabilities to get around. Kerilyn wants to create solutions to these barriers people face on the campus as a result of being differently abled. In April 2017, the government created the Nova Scotia’s Accessibility Act, also known as Bill 59. This legislation aims to make Nova Scotia more inclusive and barrier free by 2030. In particular, the legislation states that all education centers must become fully accessible to all by 2030. This means that StFX has 10 years to make these improvements.
Amy Graham and Patti-Anne Tracey
Project: An Intervention on Sexual Violence in Sport Organizations
Through research in the field of health, leadership, and policy, Patti-Anne and Amy aim to create a sexual violence prevention and awareness package for sports organizations across Canada to be included as part of mandatory training for athletes and all members in leadership positions. This innovation could lead to critical sexual violence policy changes among sport associations across Canada, as well as provide a foundation of educational awareness to create safer environments for athletes.
“We intend for the results from this research to build on previous research in this area and will contribute to developing an approach for evaluating sport organizations in terms of their awareness and protection of the well-being of Nova Scotians and Canadians who are impacted by sexual violence in sport,” Patti-Anne and Amy say.