The main sponsor of the entrepreneurship@SFU initiative is British Columbia Innovation Council (BCIC), the lead organization charged with advancing innovation and commercialization in British Columbia translated to the entrepreneurship laboratory of Product Design Studio situated on SFU’s Surrey campus.
In today's economic climate, it is increasingly important for British Columbia to be competitively positioned in the global knowledge economy. BCIC is developing an ecosystem that increases the number and success rate of technology startups in the province to promote economic development and strengthen BC's contribution to the Canadian high tech sector. BCIC does this by developing programs and providing support for initiatives that develop entrepreneurs and promote the commercialization of technology.
The Product Design Studio is a facility where students will meet to network, brainstorm,
design, and learn to launch their new and innovative products. The studio will have meeting and working areas,
computer and AV facilities, CAD software, a rapid prototype machine and other equipment.
Students will have access to state-of-the-art machining and prototyping facilities,
including a 3D printer to produce functional prototypes of their designs.
Here is a demonstration of a 3D printer:
Mentoring is a key unique feature in this entrepreneurship initiative that provides the students some form of expert leadership and guidance that would allow them to be nurtured and grow as an entrepreneur. Teams will have access to experienced business mentors not available in traditional academic courses. The mentors will support project teams with business-specific experiences to help the student entrepreneurs to establish direction with their projects.
Mentors will be responsible for establishing business needs and processes for the project teams and providing a set of objectives that are reasonable for the teams to meet. Mentors need to be seen in the light of each business challenge, in failure and in success in the modern corporate world, the mentor is someone to watch over you and someone importantly who is not a colleague.
Each admitted student to the entrepreneurship@SFU receives a monetary award to assist with their venture expenses such as concept development, design, prototyping, market research, and business launch.
SFU will cover expenses related to entrepreneurship@SFU administration, organization of business launch events, technician and computer support, industry/mentor networking events, and other incidental expenses.