In high school I spent many nights debating whether to study design or business. I made the decision to apply and attend the Arts and Business Co-op program at the University of Waterloo, fulfilling my desire to study both art and business. The ability to shape my own program, complimented with the co-op experience, has shaped the person I have become today, that person being a wildly happy and passionate entrepreneur.
Entrepreneurship is about solving big problems and making people happy. That’s what I hoped to accomplish at UWaterloo. Ideas don’t just start here, they grow and mature. The incredible culture of innovation and collaboration within UWaterloo enables ideas to become a sustainable business. During my time at UWaterloo we used a variety of resources available to help build POET and set out on our mission to improve the retail experience.
POET was started as a research project through REAP (Research Entrepreneurs Accelerating Prosperity), which allowed us to combine emerging digital technologies to form a solution that would help improve the currently broken retail system. After getting the guidance and resources to develop our technology we were accepted into the UWaterloo space at the Accelerator Centre, a local startup incubator. The mentors at the Accelerator Centre are helping us build a scalable business. With disciplined advice and the milestones they’ve created for us, our customer engagement platform is being accelerated forward. Last summer I also had the opportunity to do E-Coop through Conrad, University of Waterloos Centre of Business, Entrepreneurship and Technology. Instead of taking another term working for a company, I spent my summer co-op building my business. Conrad provided me with the knowledge and community to help support my development as an entrepreneur. They also introduced us to key influencers and Waterloo alumni.
I’m proud to say I’m now a University of Waterloo graduate. My time here has provided me with not just education, but professional work experience, a network of mentors and incredible friendships. The people I have met along the way have inspired me to follow my passions and think differently. As a Waterloo Alumni I hope to give back what has been given to me by this exceptional community. I hope to be involved and committed to the development of this school and the ecosystem within Waterloo. These have truly been years to remember.