Meet Aleks, a dedicated Mechanical Engineering graduate who balanced school, projects, co-op, athletics, and a start-up to create sustainable water in the developing world.
“My program was challenging, but I learned very practical things, and was able to gain valuable skills needed for employment and entrepreneurship.”
Balancing work and play
Outside the classroom, Aleks took his university experience to the next level.
He started a team for his 4th-year design project that created an electric-powered vehicle with the help of $30,000 he and his team raised; he became an executive of his Estonian fraternity; and he was captain of the varsity volleyball team.
Atop all those experiences, Aleks and his business partner created their own start-up company.
Bringing water to communities in need
Aleks’ start-up, Hydrated World provides communities in need with safe drinking water by selling Canadian-made apparel.
The company partners with the Safe Water Project to teach African communities how to build water purification systems and how to use this to generate revenue.
The model of the startup focuses on sustainable development as opposed to relief, with a mission to eliminate the water crisis.
Support for entrepreneurs
One of Waterloo’s on-campus entrepreneurial incubators, Conrad Enterprise Co-op, helped Aleks and his business partner turn Hydrated World into a reality.
Conrad provides students with a chance to take a co-op term and develop their own businesses with the help of mentors, workshops, and seminars, as well as other resources.
Tips for juggling multiple projects
“First off – make sure you are doing what you love. If you are continuously learning and enjoying it, then it comes easily. Secondly – don’t be lazy! Work hard, and good things happen. Finally – make mistakes!"
"Spencer and I were engineering students when we started a clothing brand. Everyone questioned what we were doing. We had no idea how to run a business, let alone a clothing line. We’ve continued to make a ton of mistakes and have learned from them.”