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How to Get Paid for Starting Your Own Company This Summer

This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at Waterloo chapter.

Last summer I had the opportunity to be a part of Summer Company, an Ontario summer program for young entrepreneurs to get help with growing their start-up business. My company, Watercolours by Emma was accepted to participate in the program along with many other start-up companies. Summer Company gives grants to each start-up in order to help them start their business. You receive the first grant of 1,500 dollars at the start of the program and are required to spend that first grant on your business, whether it’s supplies, business cards, entry fees for markets, etc. Basically any costs that are needed in order to build your business. Once you finish the program you receive the second grant of 1,500 dollars for completing the program.

Watercolours by Emma at Echo Beach Market


During the first weeks of running your business, Summer Company provides you with 10 lectures on how to run a business ranging from keeping track of your finances to how to reach your market through social media. The presentations were extremely useful and helpful in understanding what is needed in order to run a successful business.

Watercolours by Emma at Field of Dream Market


With the help of Summer Company’s grants, business lectures and mentorships I was able to run a business that was actually making profits by the end of the summer. They gave me the first steps in what was needed to run a business successfully. It was also a great experience in terms of networking. I was able to meet incredible people with unique businesses as well as creating relationships with people who will continue to mentor me with my business in the future. The people who work for Summer Company were always keeping up to date with the businesses and their progress. They were extremely encouraging and helpful in giving advice in terms of how to grow your business further. They give you hands-on coaching. During the summer, Summer Company provided the start-up companies with two markets to reach new potential customers. This gave the start-up companies a great opportunity by entering markets without having to pay the entry fees like most markets require from businesses. One of the best reasons to be a part of Summer Company is that it costs you nothing to be a part of the program, besides business costs. Your business keeps all profits generated.


If you are worried about it not being in your hometown, there are plenty of program providers all across Ontario. Summer Company is also extremely accommodating, I (as you can tell) am studying at the University of Waterloo and was unable to make it to Toronto for the in-person interviews, they were able to Skype call me for all interviews before the program actually began.


Sound interesting to you?


In order to be eligible you must be:

  • A student between 15 and 29 years old

  • Starting a new business

  • Attending school and returning to school in the fall

  • Are a resident of Ontario, a Canadian citizen or a permanent resident

  • Not working another job or attending school for more than 12 hours per week during the duration of the program

  • Able to work over the summer program period a minimum of 420 hours if you’re post-secondary student

  • Almost any type of business is eligible to participate in the program


These are the following steps in order to be accepted into the program:

1. Your selected program provider will contact you and will ask you to submit an online application.

                This will include a business plan and cash flow chart.

2. Your program provider will review your application.

3. If your application meets the program’s requirements, your program provider will invite you for an interview.

4. After the interview, your program provider will tell you if you’ve been approved to participate in the program

5. Your program provider will provide payment of up to 1,500 dollars for start-up costs.


When can I apply?

The application process is currently happening! So if you are interested you can apply through your program provider as soon as you wish. Business operations can start no earlier than April 1st, 2017 and must end by Labour Day, you can of course continue running your business when you return to school.


For all the information you can follow the link below:



If you are unsure whether or not you are eligible you can go through the checklist below:



Select the Small Business Enterprise Centre closest to you and start your application process:


I am a total movie/TV show fanatic, lover of all things handmade (I paint watercolour cards in my spare time) and have an obsession with sweets. Studying Global Business and Digital Arts
University of Waterloo Honours French and Business 2019, Her Campus Waterloo Campus Correspondent, Social Media Guru, Tech enthusiast.  Fluent in emoji, HTML and CSS. Avid reader of Refinery 29, Buzzfeed, Mashable & Tech Crunch. Follow on twitter @jena_tweets