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Start-up Experience Program

The Start-up Experience Program matches a diverse range of undergraduate students to work with seed and early stage start-up companies supported by ICUBE UTM. ICUBE UTM mentors and supports students throughout a 5- to 10-week term, helping them develop transferable employment skills through a series of workshops, seminars, and micro work-term placements. The program consists of various sessions of training and development, followed by a work placement with a start-up company. The placement is a paid micro-placement that is expected to last for 5 to 10 weeks, working 10 to 20 hours per week, for a maximum of 100 hours per student.

Start-up Experience program talk

Students in a seminar at ICUBE (photo courtesy of ICUBE UTM - Entrepreneurship in Action)

Division:

ICUBE, University of Toronto Mississauga

Instructor / Program Coordinator

Ignacio Mongrell, Assistant Director, ICUBE UTM - Entrepreneurship in Action

Typologies

Entrepreneurship; Entrepreneurship and Innovation; Entrepreneurship Initiatives

Information for Interested Students

To learn more about ICUBE programs, including the Start-up Experience Program, visit the ICUBE’s website.

Benefits to Students

While placing students with fast-growing start-ups, this program exposes them to the challenges an entrepreneur faces when starting a business: assessing viability, goals and ability, attracting financial and human resources, competing in the marketplace, dealing with laws and regulations, etc. Students have the opportunity to utilize their academic skills in an actual work environment, allowing for them to develop and apply their knowledge in a supervised ‘real-world’ setting.

Benefits to External Partners and the Community

This program, intended for early stage companies that are unable to hire full-time 16-week interns, provides access to students who can help them achieve short term business objectives. Start-ups make a huge impact in the community by creating new jobs and attracting capital and talent.

Benefits to the University

We are undertaking this project because we share a passion for teaching and for entrepreneurship at the Institute for Management & Innovation (IMI). UTM Students need to be exposed to a wide variety of experiential learning opportunities as this enhances the holistic growth and development of individuals through their adaptation to experience (Kolb 1984). Kolb posits that knowledge is created through the transformation of experience, highlighting the need for varied student experiences both inside and outside the classroom setting.

Advice for Faculty and Staff Interested in Creating a Similar Experiential Learning Opportunity

ICUBE has a mandate to support Faculty and staff in creating new businesses and developing programming for students. If you are interested in learning more, feel free to reach out to us directly.