E-Hub Proto-Ventures at the University of Ottawa
“Entrepreneurship is neither a science nor an art. It is a practice.” — Peter F. Drucker
uOttawa Proto-Ventures represent an entirely new approach to traditional entrepreneurship incubation programs offered at higher education institutions. As embodied in Peter Drucker’s quote, we see entrepreneurship as a practice. Neither art, nor science nor technique but something one can “learn-by-doing”. Proto-Ventures are, in effect, apprenticeships in entrepreneurial leadership.
Whereas most on-campus incubators operate as physical facilities hosting students with ideas, Proto-Ventures are designed as experimental ventures to pursue opportunity “sweet spots”.
Proto-Ventures represent a more creative approach in giving students entrepreneurial experiences without the need of having to launch their own companies with ideas — that more often than not — are insufficiently developed for business launch.
Each Proto-Venture will be comprised of teams of student interns from different academic disciplines. In addition to giving students valuable work-relevant experience, each Proto-Venture will be assigned an industry mentor and external advisor with extensive work experience, deep domain knowledge and broad network connections.
Proto-Ventures are like the neighborhood hockey rinks where motivated students learn to hone their skills, acquire knowledge (of the game), learn the value of collaboration and practice entrepreneurial behaviours.