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2021-22 Innovation Launchpad @ CUE

Creating An Environment for Entrepreneurship And Innovation

The ongoing COVID-19 pandemic has changed the way we learn, teach, interact, and share information. Educators and learners have been forced to pivot and adapt to a virtual environment, and have demonstrated tremendous resiliency.

Innovation Launchpad @ CUE is a program for innovative leaders to help them advance their ideas into innovative solutions. The program employs an objective-based mentoring process with a goal of advancing ideas into reality and enabling CUE members to tackle the multi-disciplinary world we live in. It prepares them to think differently, communicate effectively and most importantly build a network for gurus that leads to success!

The program includes a series of workshops, expert sessions and dedicated support for CUE members. The program is not limited to technical ideas only – any idea is welcome. Be it an app, an innovative recycling solution, a machine learning-based technology, a process, new product line, a public health-related idea such as training for cannabis use etc.  The program culminates in a showcase event where the participants present their projects and compete for a variety of prizes.

All the events for 2022 will be virtual to comply with public health guidelines in light of COVID-19 pandemic.

Our virtual 2022 program has two components: an Innovation Sprint and an Innovation Showcase. These components have been intentionally designed to provide students with inspiration and support, and equip them with the tools and knowledge needed to pursue and advance their ideas. 

Innovation Sprint:

A six-week program comprising virtual, action-based learning modules, the Innovation Sprint will challenge participants to ask questions, think critically, and build a strong foundation to bring their ideas to life. A facilitator will lead daily modules and guide participants through workshops to gain the skills, knowledge, and confidence needed to brainstorm concepts, prototype solutions, and conduct end-user testing and interviews. Upon completion of the structured modules, the facilitator will be available to answer questions, and provide clarifications and tips to participants.

Innovation Showcase:

Following the Innovation Sprint, participants will have five days to implement learnings and prepare a 5 minute presentation to be shared at our annual Innovation Launchpad Showcase. At the showcase, each participant will present their idea, progress, and next steps to a panel of expert judges from across Edmonton’s innovation and entrepreneurship community, and prizes will be awarded. More details to follow.

Applications open January 28, 2022 and closes February 25, 2022.

Maximum number of participants accepted: 15

Innovation Sprint Schedule

Mon Feb 28
Noon-1:30pm
Lean Canvas
Lean Canvas is a 1-page business plan template that helps you deconstruct your idea into its key assumptions
Tue Mar 1
Noon-1:00pm
Optional Support Session
Mon Mar 7
Noon-1:00pm
Identify Your Customers
In this workshop, you will learn some tips and tricks to identify early adopters and understand customer needs
Tues Mar 8
Noon-1:00pm
Optional Support Session
Mon Mar 14
Noon-1:30pm
Investment Readiness Workshop
Tues Mar 15
Noon-1:00pm
Optional Support Session
Mon Mar 21
Noon-1:00pm
Plan Your Test
You will be introduced to tools that can help you develop assumptions regarding your idea and help you pick the optimal prototype
Tues Mar 22
Noon-1:00pm
Optional Support Session
Mon Mar 28
Noon-1:00pm
Test the Prototype
We will help you test the proposed solution using the prototype and/or other testing methods
Mar 29 to Apr 7
Flexible Time Slots Available
Optional Support Sessions (Preparing Your Pitch)
Fri Apr 8
Time TBD
Innovation Showcase

Eligibility and Commitment

1. Only full-time students registered in a program at CUE and recent CUE graduates (graduated in the last 12 months) are eligible to apply and participate in the program. All participants must commit to participating in all program workshops and events online.

2. In addition to the online workshops, participants will be required to meet the goals set during the sprint and for the duration of the program.

3. Participants will be expected to prepare and present a 5-minute presentation at the showcase event. 

4. Participants will be expected to prepare a 2.5-minute video explaining the problem they are addressing and how their proposed solution is innovative.

Questions?

Email questions related to this program to:
Isha Katyal, Director, Innovation and Industry at isha.katyal@concordia.ab.ca