Brock University: Co-op program helps students explore entrepreneurship

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Brock students have the chance to test the waters as entrepreneurs, all while getting credit towards their degree.

Interest in the University’s Entrepreneurship Co-op work term has been growing year over year as the unique co-op experience gains traction with students, says Dana Tonus, Manager of Employer Relations and Special Initiatives for Brock Co-op, Career and Experiential Education (CCEE).

“It is exciting to see students explore the opportunity to start their own business and inspire the next generation of leaders,” she says.

The Entrepreneurial Co-op work term was designed to offer students enrolled in their current co-op program an opportunity to develop and launch a business idea with the support of Brock’s CCEE team and the Brock LINC.

Following the standard co-op structure, students are supported throughout their work term with workshops, mentorship and coaching from the Brock LINC, and have access to programs such as Kick-Starting Entrepreneurship and Haltech’s Start Me Up! The experience enables students to explore entrepreneurship with the support of the University and community startup resources.

Students in any co-op program from departments across the University are encouraged to apply.

“The learning, growth and development that takes place throughout the work term is incredible,” says Tonus. “Even if a student decides the entrepreneurial career path isn’t right for them, the co-op work term helps them to develop many competencies and skills that are highly valued by employers and will benefit them throughout their careers.”

With the program’s growth drawing support, including additional funding, students enrolled in the program now have the chance to apply for one of two Entrepreneurship Co-op Awards valued at $1,000. The winner of the Spring/Summer Term’s Entrepreneurship Co-op Awards are Vincent Von Rose, CEO of Faers, a gender-affirming accessory and clothing line for LGBTQ+ youth, and Emma Kairys, who has been working on a retail e-commerce business.

“The Entrepreneurship Co-op program has helped me advance my business venture by allowing me to have the time to specifically focus on my business, rather than trying to balance school along with it,” says Kairys. “It is amazing to receive this award. It will allow me to pursue more advertising for my business and create better content to show customers.”

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