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The Discovery Foundation announces the winners of the 2018 Technology Education Programs competition

Monday, February 19th, 2018

Vancouver, British Columbia, February 19, 2018: The Discovery Foundation, committed to the development and sustainability of the science and technology sector in BC, today announced the winners of their annual competition for Technology Education Programs. $300,000 in total will be awarded to 12 agents in three funding categories.

“I was overwhelmed by the quality and quantity of the applications this year, which have more than doubled since 2017”, says Dr. David Harper, Discovery Foundation CEO. “This year we challenged agents to propose programing that prioritized diversity and inclusiveness, and the response was impressive. I am confident that the agents we were able to fund will play a significant role in growing the tech sector and forwarding BC’s competitive advantage. I am proud to announce that all of our programming now prioritizes under-represented groups in tech, in particular women and First Nations. Of the 12 programs funded, five are exclusively for women and two are for First Nations entrepreneurs.”

The three award categories and winners are listed below. Please see our website, for more details on the programs.

Major Programs ($50,000) have a significant impact of the BC tech sector by providing mentorship to new and growing companies.

ACETECH: Discovery Foundation Leadership Development Program

SFU’s Coast Capital Savings Venture Connection: Discovery Foundation Tech4Impact Program

Women’s Enterprise Centre: Discovery Foundation’s EM3 (Entrepreneurial Mindset Mastery & Mentoring) Program

Continuing Programs ($20,000) provides funding to existing smaller scale initiatives.

Emily Carr Living Labs: Discovery Foundation’s Mentorship Program

Indigenext: Discovery Foundation’s Before Vancouver Program

Junior Achievement BC: Discovery Foundation’s JA Success Skills Program

PurposeFive: Discovery Foundation’s Women Leaders in Tech BLAST  (Business Leadership, Acceleration Strategies, Technology) Program

Vancouver Economic Commission: Discovery Foundation Capital Mentorship Program

Wavefront: Discovery Foundation’s Vertical RevUP Program

New Programs ($10,000) are specifically directed towards improving diversity in the B.C. technology sector.

New Ventures BC: Discovery Foundation Startup Connector Program

Women in Communications and Technology, BC: Discovery Foundation’s Speed Mentoring Program

Women Tech Founders: Discovery Foundation’s Women Tech Founders


Since 2010, the Discovery Foundation has provided approximately $3-million to foster science and technology in BC.  Beginning this year, the foundation is also funding research in the greentech/cleantech sector and supporting an investigation of how to best promote diversity and inclusiveness in the BC tech sector. Also new this year are post-secondary scholarships, awarded by our partners at BCIT and SFU, that reward students who show great promise, have financial need, and are from an under-represented group in BC tech. The Discovery Foundation Diversity Scholarships will help these students complete their technology, business, and entrepreneurship programs so they can contribute to employment and economic development in BC.

About the Discovery Foundation

A registered charity, the Discovery Foundation has been an enabler of the science and technology sector in BC since its formation in 1979. Its principal activity is the delivery of the Technology Education Program via agents that provide education and guidance to entrepreneurs in BC. The foundation also provides funds for research and scholarship.

The Discovery Foundation currently receives all funding through the independent and self-sustaining organization, Discovery Parks Investments Ltd.



Monday, November 6th, 2017

Discovery Foundation is now accepting applications for TEP 2018 from industry organizations, educational institutions, or similar who are experienced in offering educational programs to technology entrepreneurs.

Discovery Foundation is seeking partner Agents that can teach technology entrepreneurs the business skills and practices essential to grow world-scale BC-based businesses.

Application deadline is December 15th, 2017 at 5pm.

For application guidelines and form, please contact Christina Schroeder at

Discovery Foundation’s ADB3 Series delivered by ECUAD Living Labs

Friday, November 3rd, 2017

Discovery Foundation’s Art, Design, Business Speaker Series

Hear the stories of six entrepreneurs, designers and tech pioneers who’ve put together wildly successful startups, worked with top companies, and developed new and incredible products and business models. This series of guest lectures brings together a phenomenal breadth of experience in entrepreneurship practices, with a focus on the creative sector.

Room B4130, 520 East 1st Ave. (new campus!)
Mondays at 4:30 pm – All Welcome!

These lectures are free; a limited number of seats are open to current students, industry practitioners and alumni. ADB3 is produced in partnership with the Discovery Foundation through the Shumka Centre for Creative Entrepreneurship.

Click here to see dates and topics.

ACETECH AND DISCOVERY FOUNDATION PRESENT: DISCOVERY FOUNDATION GROWTH ESSENTIAL PROGRAM: Leadership Effectiveness: The Trust Equation and Peer Coaching December 5th, 2017

Friday, November 3rd, 2017

Listening Skills, Open-Mindedness, Curiosity and Self-Awareness

The innovation process involves considerable risk both for the organization and employees participating in the process. Challenging the status quo and existing assumptions can create backlash – creative ideas require more expansive, progressive thinking and are inherently more risky than incremental improvements.

In an innovative organization, on the other hand, atypical ideas are embraced and the people who propose them championed and recognized as creative thinkers. They know that they can take risks and that they will be rewarded for doing so, and that if the project does not succeed, they will not be reprimanded. Rather, they will be expected to drop the project quickly, share what they have learned and take on a new project.

Their secret? Trust.

Session Outcomes:

  • Develop a nuanced understanding of trust
  • Explore their own trust-building behaviors
  • Increase personal awareness around their own strengths and weaknesses
  • Learn how to help foster greater innovation and performance overall through encouraging safe debate and critical feedback, encouraging new perspectives and championing radical ideas and team members
  • Understand the fundamentals of peer-coaching – with the aim of participants holding one another accountable to the Trust Commitment each makes

This half-day session will be delivered by THNK School of Creative Leadership. 

Click here for more information and to register.

Discovery Foundation’s Venture Ready Workshop Series Oct 19th – Nov 16th

Tuesday, October 3rd, 2017

Launch your business.
Grow your network.
Discover alternative career-paths.

The SBN and the Discovery Foundation have organized a free workshops series featuring the fundamentals of starting and building a new venture in the life sciences. Aimed primarily at budding entrepreneurs, life sciences researchers and those looking to explore alternative career paths, the workshops build awareness of the current Canadian entrepreneurial landscape and resources available to those looking to start their own business.

Upon its completion, participants should be able to recognize the fundamental features of the entrepreneurial mindset, and be armed with the confidence to pursue opportunities either as own ventures or part of a bigger corporation.

What’s in it for me?

  • Provide a basic understanding needed to start and grow a business
  • Provide networking opportunities with like-minded peers in the life sciences community
  • Excellent mentorship opportunities with course instructors
  • An opportunity to develop your business planning skills

The course is free of charge and attendance is recorded at the beginning of each lecture. SBN members get priority into the venture ready program! You can purchase membership here. Attendance at all four workshops is required to obtain a Venture Ready certificate of completion and access to an informational interview with a SBN mentor coordinated by the director of mentorship. Click here for more information and to register.


Discovery Foundation GROWTH ESSENTIAL PROGRAM: One Page Strategic Plan Oct 5th delivered by ACETECH

Monday, October 2nd, 2017

The Most Effective Way to Plan and Get Plans Executed

The One-Page Strategic Plan is a proven framework for management teams to integrate a disciplined approach to strategic thinking and execution planning. This simple yet powerful tool allows companies to edit their vision and strategy down to a single, action-oriented page.

In just one day, you and your leadership team can take your business on the road to growth with the Rockefeller Habits 2.0 tools and strategies. Over 20,000 executives have attended this workshop and experienced results.

Session Outcomes:

  • Focus on the four decisions, in growing your business, that you must get right or risk leaving significant revenues, profits, and time on the table: People, Strategy, Execution, and Cash
  • Build a shared conviction and greater commitment to the strategy. Having a plan is imperative, but it’s also important that those executing it are in agreement and committed to making it happen
  • Walk away with a solid start on the Gazelles’ signature One-Page Strategic Plan providing a roadmap for alignment among your leadership team members along with time-tested and proven principles for growth that you can start implementing right away

To register, click here.

Discovery Foundation and Innovation Central Society present the Discovery Foundation’s Northern BC Tech Education Program: VR and 360 video seminar

Wednesday, September 27th, 2017

As part of Tech Week in Prince George,  Innovation Central Society presents the Discovery Foundation’s Northern BC Tech Education Program: VR & 360 Video Seminar.

“Virtual reality and 360 video holds potential for application in many different businesses, and in different ways,” said Matt Hutcheon, executive director of ICS. “We’re hearing interest from our clients about VR related to marketing and customer engagement, as well as internal uses like staff training and simulation of dangerous workplace situations. And from a variety of sectors, spanning from tourism and hospitality, to forestry and mining. We’re excited that Chris Bedyk will be able to provide insights into how various organizations can utilize this emerging technology, and share some case studies from his own work.”

This seminar is one of many ways local entrepreneurs can learn the latest in cutting edge tech advantages they can use for bettering their businesses. The Discovery Foundation’s Northern BC Tech Education Program has a suite of opportunities to learn, and there are more initiatives and learning opportunities besides, under the ICS roof.

Bedyk will be on hand at ICS in their Hubspace conference area (1299 3rd Avenue) from 1-4 p.m. today, Sept 27th. There is a $20 charge to attend, available here.

The Virtual Reality & 360 Video seminar is immediately followed by the launch party for ICS’s Tech Week events.

The not-for-profit local agency operates thanks to support from the British Columbia Innovation Council, National Research Council, Northern Development Initiative Trust, and other funding partners enabling them to accelerate and stimulate new and innovative business ventures in the Prince George region.


Discovery Foundation’s Venture Ready Workshop Series

Wednesday, September 27th, 2017

Discovery Foundation and the SBN present “Venture Ready”, free workshops on:

  • Pitching
  • Starting your own business
  • Keeping your business alive
  • Investing into business

Oct 19th – Nov 16th 2017 6pm-7:30pm at the BC Cancer Research Centre. More details to follow!

Discovery Foundation’s Building Biotech – Challenges & Opportunities in and out of Canada: Sept 28th

Wednesday, September 27th, 2017

The Discovery Foundation and the Student Biotechnology Network are delighted to kick off the 2017-2018 season with our annual Building Biotech Event on Sept 28th. This year, with Building Biotech: Challenges and Opportunities In and Out of Canada, we hope that the stories that are shared and ideas exchanged inspire you to continue to reach for the stars.

If the success of previous events is anything to go by, this evening is an excellent opportunity to re-connect with other enthusiastic students and industry professionals, while gaining insight and perspectives on the local life sciences industry over a delicious three course dinner.

Tickets are now sold out! We hope to see you there!

Discovery Foundation Inclusive Pipeline Catalyst Program presents: the SCALE UP FROM START-UP SERIES

Wednesday, September 27th, 2017

Canada has recently launched an ambitious plan to drive national innovation and growth, a large part of which is reimagining and transforming the innovation ecosystem into an optimal place to not only start, but also scale companies to earn millions in revenue and employ thousands of Canadians. However, getting to scale takes many steps and missteps – from developing the flexible entrepreneurial mindset to taking the plunge with your first crazy idea.

At Coast Capital Savings Venture Connection, we understand the value of cultivating the scale-up mentality at ideation. We are bringing together experienced scale-up artists who will weigh in insights areas crucial to the Canadian economy and global society. This series is open to all – from new founders to seasoned, serial entrepreneurs.

Sign up for mentoring sessions with experts: To maximize engagement and value for our community, the Scale up from Start-up series allows event participants to sign up for mentoring sessions with our expert panelists and Venture Connection mentors to learn from the best in the sector.

Gain insight from the best: Following the mentor sessions, our featured guests will tackle key challenges and share hard-won insights in a panel discussion, followed by audience Q&A and networking opportunities.

For more information and to register, click here.