WERC is a community with mentors (Entrepreneurs in Residence), resources, and events to help each student of the community grow in their entrepreneurial skills and meet like-minded individuals.
In short, WERC is a student's first-step into entrepreneurship at the University of Waterloo and available to anyone in or affiliated with residence. Become a member by joining the WERC mailing list.
Join your WERC community
Is your passion to be a great co-op employee, start your own business, or to create a social project to change the world? Become a member by joining the WERC mailing list.
Find out more and get exclusive access to events and support in your first-year. Make sure to keep up-to-date on great events such as presentations from TED Talk speakers, Communitech tours, and more.
Activities & Events
By joining the WERC community, you will have access to events, people and mentors interested the areas of business, design, and creative thinking from residence, on campus and in the Waterloo community.
Examples of WERC planned events include:
- Networking dinners
- Entrepreneurship boot camp
- Mini Hackathons
- Entrepreneurship Fair
Entrepreneurs in Residence
Entrepreneurs in Residence [EIRs] are essential to bridging students living in Waterloo Residences to their potential entrepreneurial success. The Waterloo Entrepreneurship Residence Connection [WERC] program wouldn't be possible without them!
The EIR role provides students in residence with:
- A connection to the entrepreneurship ecosystem
Program & Year: 3B Nanotechnology Engineering
Entrepreneurial Background: I’m the Co-Founder of Startup Waterloo, Co-Founder of Sofar Sounds Waterloo, Founder of reboot.build, and outgoing Co-President of the Entrepreneurship Society at UWaterloo.
Outside of work I enjoy: I love playing music, teaching drums, and performing with my band.
What I look forward to as an EIR: I am looking forward to working together with students to develop an entrepreneurial mindset, and help them grow their ideas from concept to something tangible! I am excited to explore new types of entrepreneurship with different students. Email Amit.
Ask me about:
- Tech start-ups
- Organizational skills
- Pitch business and leadership coaching
- Scaling ventures
- Velocity, EntSoc & Music
Program & Year: Peace and Conflict Studies and Business, 2018
Entrepreneurial Background: Won Veloity 5K for my startup SheLeads, a web-based game that encourages leadership skills in girls aged 6-10.
Outside of work I enjoy: Painting, fishdome on iPad, lots of scrabble and more Netflix.
What I look forward to as an EIR: Learning from some amazing students as we work together to bring ideas to life. Email Cassandra.
Ask me about:
- Turning a passion into business
- Greenhouse social impact incubator
- Socially driven projects
- Video games
Program & Year: Masters in Business, Entrepreneurship & Technology (MBET) Class of 2018
Entrepreneurial Background: I was part of the founding team of a startup that focused on designing a better future in menstrual hygiene; instrumental in streamlining processes for the company and setting up the production unit from scratch.
Outside of work I enjoy: Traveling, being a food junkie, playing cricket, football and badminton.
What I look forward to as an EIR: As an EIR, I seek to ignite the entrepreneurial spark in Waterloo residence students and motivate them to take up entrepreneurship as a life option. Email Vishal.
Ask me about:
- Critical thinking
- Overcoming barriers
- Social impact projects
Program & Year: 4A Urban Planning
Entrepreneurial Background: I am the founder of Hair by Lassa, Founder of the D.R.E.A.M. foundation and have tinkered with many other event planning and social outreach projects in the past.
Outside of work I enjoy: Being with friends and family, traveling, exploring and eating food (preferably Indian food).
What I look forward to as an EIR: Fostering an environment that enables students to grow their ideas while creating a strong entrepreneurial ecosystem. Email Lassa.
Ask me about:
- Starting a Physical Business
- Social Outreach
- Blue Ocean Strategy
- Pitch Presentation Skills
- Urban Planning
2017/2018 WERC Communications and Marketing Lead
Program & Year: 4A Environment and Business
Marketing Background: I’ve been working in social media for approximately a year, which sparked my interests in entrepreneurship and the technology scene of Kitchener/Waterloo. Most recently, I worked for Velocity as their Marketing and Communications Assistant which solidified my passion for empowering others to explore entrepreneurship as an option!
Outside of work I enjoy: I enjoy spending time with my friends and family, cooking, and working out!
What I look forward to with WERC: Empowering students to do what they love through our programming. I remember that as a first year student, I never thought I would be interested in the world of technology and entrepreneurship, so I am excited to help others find their passions early on in their university careers with WERC! Email Christina.
Ask me about:
- Professional Social Media Presence
- LinkedIn / Resume Tips
- Velocity Programs
Frequently asked questions
Who is WERC for?
WERC is for all students living on-campus here at the University of Waterloo. Any resident can join and participate in events. This isn't just for one floor; it's for every resident in Waterloo Residences. It's also not just for first-years – it's for upper-years, Dons, etc. in rez as a way to enable connections and networking opportunities.
What are Entrepreneurs in Residence?
EIRs will be seeking out students to mentor throughout the term, and will run small events connecting residents to a supportive community and entrepreneurship resources.
Is there a deadline to join WERC?
The mailing list is located on the WERC home page. We prefer students to join WERC early in the term so that they can grow their skills progressively as the term goes on. However, anyone is welcome to join half-way through the school year, or whenever they are ready to participate.
Does WERC have any big events?
YES! WERC runs 1-2 major events in the fall and winter terms. Examples include:
- Kickoff Event in Velocity Start
- Entrepreneurship Bootcamp
- Design Thinking 101
Who is WERC run by?
WERC is an initiative of the Department of Housing and Residences. Now in its third year as a pilot, this initiative falls within the umbrella of Living-Learning programs.
How can you help?
UWaterloo aims to be the most innovative University in the world and WERC will be a key way of inspiring students to become entrepreneurial (whether in a job, in a start-up, or in a non-profit).
WERC will be the first-step of many entrepreneurial journeys. Reach out to Krystal Kowalski if you have an idea on how you could help. Also, please encourage others to sign up for the program by becoming a member on the WERC home page.
How will the success of WERC be measured?
In addition to measuring quality and quantity of student engagement in the WERC program, there will be an entrepreneurship question included in the Experience Evaluation (which is sent to students half-way through the term). The question will read: “To what degree has living on campus increased your desire to be entrepreneurial, as an employee and/or by starting your own business?” It is our goal that over 50% of students living in Waterloo Residences will respond either “Moderately” or “Extremely.” If this program does not expose students to entrepreneurship resources or inspire students to be entrepreneurial, then the program will not continue.