Alumni Chats with Wayne Chang: Meet Ian Tao, founder of Sesame

Photo of Ian Tao

In this series, E Co-op Coordinator and BET 300 instructor Wayne Chang catches up with alumni from our undergraduate programs who are now running their startups full-time.

Four months as a startup founder: Enterprise Co-op students share takeaways from their terms

Medea Rasheed, E Co-op student, giving a painting workshop

Put 25 entrepreneurs in one room for a few hours, and you’re bound to learn something.

That’s exactly what happened at the Enterprise Co-op (E Co-op) End of Term presentations held on Monday December 7, 2015. E Co-op students gathered to reflect on four months of venture-building and share what they learned for the benefit of their peers.

Here are a few of the takeaways from the term:   

Be patient, results take time. 

Alumni Chats with Wayne Chang: Meet Beth Nenniger and Laura Austin, directors of BuildDirect Design Center

In this series, E Co-op Coordinator and BET 300 instructor Wayne Chang catches up with alumni from our undergraduate programs who are now running their startups full-time.

From idea generation to the Next Gen Den: the process behind PopRx

Ali and Vejey pitching their startup, PopRx, on Dragon's Den

Last month, my co-founder Vejey Gandier and I pitched our startup PopRx on CBC Dragon's Den Next Gen Den, securing $100,000 in investment.

How to hack science in five easy steps

In September, I participated in Hack the North with my Suncayr co-founders, Derek Jouppi and Andrew Martinko, and our classmate Dave Badami. Hack the North is Canada's largest international hackathon, where students come together for 36 hours to collaboratively code a unique solution to a problem from scratch. For those familiar with Suncayr’s technology (a marker ink that tells you when to reapply sunscreen), you may be wondering what on earth we were doing at a hackathon. For us, it was all about networking. We found out that Sam Altman, the president of Y Combinator, was going to be there, so we knew that we had to go too.

Scaling your startup, team and knowledge

When I started my Enterprise Co-op (E Co-op) term in May, Dominic Toselli and I were just a team of two co-founders looking to use technologies that we used at companies in Silicon Valley to optimize decision making in the oil and gas industry. Since then, we've added 4 others and effectively tripled the PetroPredict team. Over the past couple of months we were able to run a high performance team and enable our company to grow and scale.

The summer I became an entrepreneur

As an undergraduate student at the University of Waterloo, when I wanted to explore entrepreneurship as a potential career path this summer, I decided to live in the Velocity Residence and take the Conrad Centre's BET 300: Foundations of Venture Creation course.

My most memorable moment was our trip to Montreal for the International Startup FestivalBET 300 provides student entrepreneurs with opportunities to attend events that help them develop their venture ideas.

MBA vs MBET

I often get asked the question, “What is the difference between an MBA and an MBET degree?” My usual response would be that someone has to hire MBAs, but I realize that answer is a little too simplistic.

It is not that Master of Business Administration (MBA) programs are of poor quality or in some way inferior; in fact, on many occasions, I have suggested to students that the Master of Business, Entrepreneurship and Technology (MBET) program may not be the best path for them and that they may be better suited for the MBA path.   

Doug Sparkes, Lecturer and Associate Director of the MBET program.

Making my hobby into my career through MBET

Whether or not an entrepreneur should make their hobby into a career is a large debate within the business community. This path does not work for everyone, but through the Master of Business, Entrepreneurship and Technology (MBET) program, I have been able to take my hobby and turn it into a premise for my business, The Mod Market.
  

5 Lessons from Silicon Valley

Harry Gandhi, an Enterprise Co-op (E Co-op) and BET 300 student, recently traveled to Silicon Valley to attend Startup Grind 2014 and a "Biotech Business Bootcamp" as a semi-finalist in the OneStart Competition, the world's largest biotech idea competition.
    

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