From Environmental Engineering student to cosmetic start-up founder

Friday, April 28, 2023
Matthew Chun, founder of Matin Nuit and Enterprise Co-op student

From environmental engineering student to cosmetic start-up founder – people often ask me if there's a connection. The answer is a straightforward “no”. The environmental engineering program curriculum at the University of Waterloo doesn't relate to cosmetics or building businesses. Unlike other engineering disciplines that are linked to computing, environmental engineering is typically more conservative when it comes to entrepreneurship.

During my last few co-op terms, I worked for cosmetic companies, including L’Oréal, and saw a business opportunity that I was passionate about pursuing. Although I knew there was a problem I wanted to address, I didn’t know where to begin. So, I applied for the Enterprise Co-op (E co-op) program – that was the start of my entrepreneurial journey.

Over the next few months, under the guidance of Wayne Chang, I learned the fundamentals of building a business – from filling in the nine squares of the Business Model Canvas to staying up all night preparing for pitch competitions.

Matin Nuit logo

I’m the founder of Matin Nuit: our team is on a mission to help influencers create and launch their own beauty products.

I wanted to write this blog to remind University of Waterloo students that they're enrolled at one of the most innovative institutions in Canada and beyond. Whether you're studying a discipline more obviously related to ventures or not, there are a wealth of resources available to help you succeed – from undergraduate BET courses to Velocity programs and E co-op. Don't hesitate to reach out for help and leverage the start-up ecosystem that Waterloo is renowned for.

As I approach the end of my undergraduate program, I plan to pursue entrepreneurship full-time, and I can’t wait to see just how far I can take Matin Nuit.