Placing Top University Graduates in Nova Scotia Startups

 In Education

This June, top university graduates from across Nova Scotia will begin two-year paid Fellowships at some of the province’s most promising emerging and early-stage startups. The Government of Canada today announced a $45,450 contribution to enable Venture for Canada to create the infrastructure needed to place six Fellows at venture-backed Nova Scotian companies. The non-repayable contribution comes through the Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency’s Business Development Program (BDP).

A new Nova Scotia Program Director will work to close a gap between startups and post-secondary institutions by matching top university graduates with cutting-edge, homegrown organizations in the ICT, oceantech, cleantech and life sciences sectors. Through a Fellowship program, companies will gain access to the talent and energy they need to thrive, and graduates will gain the experience, mentorship and networking opportunities they need to become the innovative entrepreneurs of tomorrow. The Fellows will undergo a five-week training camp prior to beginning their positions.

After receiving nearly 1,700 applications, Venture for Canada is confident of the very high quality of graduate talent that will be made available to the startup companies. To date, the not-for-profit organization has placed three Fellows for the 2016 program year and expects to add at least six more. This adds to the seven Fellows placed during the 2015 program.


“Venture for Canada is helping to lay a groundwork for success for both our young people and our young companies. These Fellowships can ignite a lifelong passion for entrepreneurship while providing emerging and early stage startups with access to sharp, young minds. As reinforced in Budget 2016, the Government of Canada is committed to supporting opportunities for businesses of all sizes and Canadians of all ages to build our economy and our country.”

– The Honourable Navdeep Bains, Minister of Innovation, Science and Economic Development and Minister responsible for the Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency

“Nova Scotia’s ten universities and 13 community college campuses play an integral role in building and strengthening Atlantic Canada’s startup ecosystem. Harnessing the potential within the constant influx of young, creative and engaged talent generated by our post-secondary educational institutions is one of the best ways to do this. We are living in a world defined by innovation, and through our support for organizations such as Venture for Canada, the Government of Canada is demonstrating our commitment to support innovators.”

– Andy Fillmore, Member of Parliament for Halifax

“Venture for Canada offers unique opportunities for our country’s best and brightest youth. Our country has the opportunity to become a global innovation leader and the best way to reach this goal is to invest in our youth. By fostering hands-on education and developing top talent in a broad range of high-growth-potential fields, we can build global firms right here. By connecting our best and brightest to Canadian firms we are one step closer to taking Canada’s tech sector to the next level.”

– Scott Stirrett, Executive Director, Venture for Canada

(Source: Government of Canada)

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