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A three-week course in Innovation, Creativity and Entrepreneurship (SMO 330) will be offered for second-year Students in Engineering, Business, and Science in May 2018.

Course Instructors

Mike Lipsett (Engineering)

Tony Briggs (Business)

Mario Nascimento (Science)

So why study entrepreneurship?

A company has to know how it makes money.

Increasing competition means that companies have to be more creative in order to be innovative, with effective teams responding to shorter product design and development cycles. Thirty per cent or more of jobs are at risk of automation. This is a double edged sword for people starting their career.

To be ready for this, you need to have:

  • A broad education
  • A well-honed EQ and an ability to work in teams
  • Tech savvy
  • Adaptability
  • Hustle

No single discipline covers everything needed to be a creative, innovative entrepreneur. But we are offering in introductory course intended to give you a head start in being one of those entrepreneurs.

A three-week version of SMO 330 will be offered as an intensive short course for 60 engineering, science, and business students, after the end of the Winter term: May 1-19, 2018. This course is based on a model developed at Reykjavik University, and attended by the instructing team.

Course Objectives

  • Learning what entrepreneurship is, and the difference between a start-up and an established company
  • Meeting other team members and becoming a team
  • Developing and practising creative thinking skills
  • Conducting a preliminary investigation of market needs
  • Brainstorming and developing a product concept
  • Constructing a business model (using the business model canvas)
  • Developing customers (including getting out of the building to take with potential customers and stakeholders such as potential manufacturers)
  • Developing an intellectual property strategy
  • Making an elevator pitch: How to explain “We help X do Y by Z” (“Oh, and we need Q to do R next”) – in 30 seconds
  • Learning about prototyping and creating a minimum viable product
  • Understanding the role of marketing and sales
  • Developing and implementing a financing and investment strategy
  • Participating in a start-up ecosystem

Course Activities

  • Attending daily sets of lectures – some by local entrepreneurs and innovators
  • Reading course material
  • Working actively in a multidisciplinary team in afternoons (and evenings).
  • Participating in regular one-on-one meetings with mentors, three times per week, plus access to instructors as needed.
  • Giving updates as progress reports
  • Delivering three elevator pitches (one each week)
  • Demonstrating knowledge in a multiple-choice exam
  • Delivering a presentation
  • Submitting a final report

Why Might You Want to Take This Course?

Engineering and Science are innovative professions; and most engineers and scientists will work in a business. Business students need to work with others who provide the technical direction of a company. If you want to be part of starting a business, then you will need to develop your entrepreneurial skills, and find people with complementary skills.

It will be good for your future career.
It will be fun.

Registration will be based on selection criteria related to demonstrated interest in innovation and entrepreneurship, and ability to work in teams. Successful applicants will be informed in late April, and then can be manually registered in SMO 330 (a three credit course, which for Engineering students meets one of the complimentary studies requirements).

Two short videos about the course and the experience can be viewed here: