Ten students from the Kingston area have made their way into the Summer Company Program, which will provide their businesses with a $3,000 grant funded by the Ontario government.
Since its inception, the Summer Company program has been instrumental in helping young individuals aged 15 to 29 start and run their own businesses, providing them with valuable business training and financial support, according to a release from Kingston Economic Development (EcDev), who facilitate the program. Out of the $3,000 grant amount, up to $1,500 is designated for the startup cost, and the remaining funds will be awarded upon successful completion of the program.
“Supporting students on their entrepreneurial journey is an incredible experience, witnessing their passion transform into businesses, as they continue to explore if entrepreneurship is a potential future career option. With a team of highly successful coaches guiding them this year, we are empowering these young minds to build their dreams. From mastering the art of lure-making to bridging gaps in sports training, from making fashion inclusive to capturing moments through a lens, they are filling gaps in the Kingston business market,” stated Norman Musengimana, Business Development Manager for Start-Ups & Entrepreneurship at Kingston Economic Development.
According to the release, this year’s cohort of Summer Company participants have already begun demonstrating their entrepreneurial spirit and dedication throughout the week-long business bootcamp hosted by Business Coach, Claire Bouvier. The student entrepreneurs have each been matched with a business mentor to help guide them as they start and grow their businesses over the course of the summer. The students are currently in the process of refining their business’ respective products or services and serving their first customers, Kingston EcDev noted.
“During the business bootcamp, I had the privilege to connect with young entrepreneurs and learn about their unique businesses,” said Mason Rice, Founder of Rice Photography and 2023 Summer Company participant. “Interacting with them was valuable, as it broadened my perspective and allowed room for future collaboration. Additionally, I gained practical sales skills and marketing strategies that I plan on implementing soon. I am excited to apply what I’ve learned and take my