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YouLaunch kicks off the New Year with entrepreneurial learning in the classroom

(Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario) – January 12, 2016:

Entrepreneurial spirit was in full force at St. Francis French Immersion Catholic School last week, where YouLaunch kicked off 2016 with the first Market Your Thoughts workshop in Sault Ste. Marie. Forty grade 7-8 students learned what it means to be an entrepreneur and how great ideas can come to life. Students were asked to illustrate what an entrepreneur looks like and were left with the challenge to create a business plan for an idea that would make Sault Ste. Marie a better place.

St. Francis French Immersion teacher Micaela Mansfield provided feedback on her students’ participation in the YouLaunch workshop; “My students were highly engaged and enthusiastic all day - the energy level in the room was amazing! They learned that anyone can be an entrepreneur; what will drive them is their passion, ideas and creativity. The room was buzzing the next day as students continued talking about their business ideas and excitement for getting started. I look forward to watching them innovate and imagine over the next couple of weeks as they work on their plans and multimedia presentations for their own business.”

Market Your Thoughts is a regional competition designed for students in grades 7-8 and is just one of many Northern Ontario Youth Entrepreneurship Initiative (NOYEI) programs offered by YouLaunch. NOYEI has been a driving force in entrepreneurship awareness and initiation for the past 15 years. Over 16,000 youth have participated in these innovative and experiential programs making entrepreneurship more accessible and raising awareness of entrepreneurship as a career option.

YouLaunch is offering Market Your Thoughts (grades 7-8) and Create a Logo (grades 3-6) workshops until early March 2016. The competition gives students a chance to win up to $175 based on their submission. If you are interested in learning more about YouLaunch programming or would like to schedule a class for a workshop please contact Ashlee Gerard, Youth Outreach Officer at 705 942 7927 ext. 3174 or by email at

YouLaunch will be hosting an Entrepreneur and Innovation PD Day Camp on February 5th for students in grades 6-8 as part of Bon Soo:

Bon Soo Start Me Up Camp hosted by YouLaunch and NOYEI

Date: Friday February 5th, 9 am to 3 pm

Location: Algoma University, Essar Convergence Centre, Room CC201

Price: $10 with proceeds to United Way

Lunch will not be provided. Please pack a lunch or bring money to spend at the Algoma U. cafeteria.

Registration is limited. Contact Ashlee at by February 1st to register. Students can also register at the Algoma Family Services Free Skate on Sunday January 17th at the Essar Centre.

To keep up with what YouLaunch is doing in Sault Ste Marie, like us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter.


About YouLaunch

YouLaunch, the Sault Ste. Marie Innovation Centre’s Youth Entrepreneur Program will act as a catalyst for youth entrepreneur development in Algoma. Through outreach activities and business start-up resources, youth will be engaged and supported to pursue their business ideas and consider entrepreneurship as a career. YouLaunch will develop outreach activities, tools, and resources geared to youth entrepreneur development.

About the Sault Ste. Marie Innovation Centre

The Sault Ste. Marie Innovation Centre (SSMIC) is a non-profit organization established in 1999 to function as a catalyst for economic development and diversification in the information technology and science knowledge-based sectors. SSMIC’s mission is to drive business growth, facilitate research and commercialize innovation in globally significant areas of science and technology through partnerships, expert advice, community development, business incubation, youth outreach and sector development activities. Key SSMIC business divisions include the Community Geomatics Centre, Rural Agri-Innovation Network, Algoma Games for Health, Business Support Services and Smart Energy.


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