Laurier LaunchPad – Waterloo

Laurier LaunchPad is an experiential learning opportunity for students and alumni to discover, validate, and launch an innovative new venture! We teach the latest methods in entrepreneurial management to eliminate risk and increase the chances of creating a successful start-up.

Based on the concept of a flipped classroom, students roll up their sleeves and apply weekly training to their own businesses week by week.  Entrepreneurs give regular status updates on their ventures and use class time to present weekly findings from experiments. Aside from building their own businesses, entrepreneurs are expected to act as formal advisers for others in the LaunchPad.

**The next cohort will be starting September, 2015.

Application deadlines will be announced soon**

At Laurier Waterloo, LaunchPad is offered as a course as well as a program. Here are the important differences:


Coming into the LaunchPad course we expect applicants to have a well-thought out, unproven new venture idea.  The LaunchPad course (BU498/BU610) focuses specifically on the discovery and validation stages of development, and requires the hunger to step outside and meet with customers to prove the business model works! Those committed to seeing their ventures through are invited to apply to LaunchPad program.  The LaunchPad program is ongoing year-round and transitions into local incubators such as the Communitech Venture Services or Communitech Rev!

Many of the entrepreneurs entering LaunchPad are building their first businesses. To support budding entrepreneurs we connect startups with industry experts, Laurier LaunchPad Mentors, and Entrepreneurs-In-Residence to provide guidance through the initial stages of discovery and validation.

055WLU02SEBsandB-055Built on the shoulders of giants, the Laurier LaunchPad focuses on developing a lean and iterative mentality.  The strategy and design of this course stems from the current thought leaders in entrepreneurship including:

The Start-up Genome Report – UC Berkeley & Stanford University

The Start-up Owner’s Manual – Steve Blank & Bob Dorf

Business Model Generation – Alex Osterwalder & Yves Pigneur 

The Lean Start-up – Eric Ries

Running Lean – Ash Maurya

The Lean LaunchPad – Standford University, Columbia University & UC Berkeley

Each startup uses this foundation of knowledge to experiment and make evidence-based changes to turn an unproven idea into a business model that works.

For both the LaunchPad course and program, entrepreneurs can apply by presenting their business model canvas to a panel of Laurier faculty and entrepreneurs. Each application is reviewed based on innovation, business model, founding team, LaunchPad expectations, and plans for taking the business forward after LaunchPad. Companies that are accepted are then integrated into our entrepreneurship eco-system to work with our community partners through defined milestones and proven practices of successful startups.


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