Looking for a job this summer? Applications are now being accepted for a young entrepreneur program administered in the region by the Sault Ste. Marie Economic Development Corporation. Summer Company provides grants and mentoring to assist high school and university students in starting a business during the summer months.
To apply for the program, visit www.ontario.ca/page/start-summer-company-students or contact Angela Bruni, an Economic Development Officer with the Sault Ste. Marie Economic Development Corporation, at 705-759-2616 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Space is limited and, historically, all program spots allocated to the region are filled.
Summer Company is open to youth between the ages of 15 and 29 who are returning to school in the fall. At the start of the program, participants receive enterprise training and a $1,500 grant to help get their business off the ground. They are also provided with ongoing mentorship throughout the summer. As long as all training and reporting requirements are met, participants are given an additional $1,500 grant at the end of the season.
“Summer Company helps students find seasonal employment, and it also provides the participants with an opportunity to try their hand at entrepreneurship in a low-risk environment,” said Bruni. “It’s an excellent program, and I encourage students to sign up. With limited space, the sooner people register, the better.”
Summer Company participants can start any type of business they want. In past years, ideas have ranged from laser printing and brick driveway re-leveling, to vehicle detailing and sports camps. In many cases, the seasonal businesses were eventually turned into full-time, year-round operations, some of which are still around today. PAC Construction Group Ltd. is a prime example of a former Summer Company firm that continues to operate – and thrive – years later.
Funded by the Province of Ontario, Summer Company is administered in the Algoma District and Chapleau by the Sault Ste. Marie Economic Development Corporation. Since 2010, a total of 90 youth in the region have made their way through the program. Summer Company is run out of the organization’s Millworks Centre for Entrepreneurship at the Machine Shop. Online: www.themillworks.ca.