Student strides towards entrepreneurial future

Friday, June 2, 2023

Osose Itua, a fourth-year Waterloo Engineering student, will cross the stage at convocation on June 16 to receive her Bachelor of Applied Science (BASc) in mechatronics engineering. Along with her newly minted degree, Itua graduates with a well-rounded student experience that has shaped her entrepreneurial ambitions.

Itua got to do six co-operative work experiences during her studies. The first was at a large company, the following four were at startups and the final one had her working on her own business, Foodage.

“Waterloo is full of resources that foster entrepreneurship,” says Itua. “Co-op, hackathons, WiE events, the BET courses and the Velocity Incubator Program – I took advantage of them all. And the most important lesson I learned is that being an entrepreneurial engineer is about designing for others, not for yourself, not because you have some cool idea but because there’s an end-user with a need.”

Itua is keen to get as much real-world experience as possible, but her immediate priority is to explore the commercial potential of Foodage through Velocity’s Venture Ready program.  

“I don’t think entrepreneurial people have to start their own businesses,” says Itua. “Lots of established companies now recognize the business value of an entrepreneurial mindset and are trying to attract these personalities and skills. Maybe one day I’ll experience that opportunity but right now I want to focus on Foodage.”

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