Newfoundland & Labrador Announces: Young Entrepreneurs & Innovators Program

It is a great time to be a youth (35 and under) or youth-oriented non-profit in Newfoundland & Labrador as the Government announces its Young Entrepreneurs & Innovators Program. More opportunities are now available for youth, especially in Rural NL.

Innovation, Trade and Rural Development
Human Resources, Labour and Employment
October 29, 2010

Entrepreneurship Program Targets Increased Contribution of Youth

Launched today, the Provincial Government’s latest youth initiative, the Young Entrepreneurs and Innovators Program, is a flexible and creative program designed to support youth and their contribution to Newfoundland and Labrador’s business community.

Announced by the Honourable Shawn Skinner, Minister of Innovation, Trade and Rural Development, at Clarenville High School, the new program provides young entrepreneurs with financial capital, as well as access to mentoring and advisory services to ensure the long-term success of business start-ups. Minister Skinner was accompanied at the announcement by the Honourable Ross Wiseman, Minister of Business and MHA for Trinity North.

“Young Newfoundlanders and Labradorians have incredible opportunities to become successful entrepreneurs, employers, and leaders,” said Minister Skinner. “This new program works in conjunction with other recently launched youth-specific initiatives such as the ExportAdvantage Internship Program and youth innovation activities. Together they take aim at creating awareness of the possibilities that exist in local industries and improving the ability of youth to capitalize on them.”

Minister Skinner added that engaging youth introduces fresh perspectives and new ideas to the province’s traditional and knowledge-based industries.

“In addition to increasing activity across a wide range of industries, the participation of youth is required to fill an entrepreneurial void as existing entrepreneurs retire from the workplace,” said Minister Skinner. “As youth become the next generation of business owners, they will bring new energy, enthusiasm, and an approach to business that strengthens the province’s economy.”

The Young Entrepreneurs and Innovators Program was developed under the Provincial Government’s Youth Retention and Attraction Strategy, Creating a Province of Choice: A Youth Retention and Attraction Strategy for Newfoundland and Labrador.

“The Youth Retention and Attraction Strategy marked the beginning of a bold, new partnership with the young people of the province and represented our shared commitment to ensuring Newfoundland and Labrador fulfills its potential for a bright, prosperous future,” said the Honourable Susan Sullivan, Minister of Human Resources, Labour and Employment and Minister Responsible for Youth Engagement. “The strategy brings together a wide array of initiatives and policy directions that are firmly grounded in the values, priorities and ideas of youth. Today’s announcement is yet another fine initiative from within our strategy supporting young entrepreneurs to follow their dreams and become contributing members to our provincial economy.”

Minister Wiseman supports providing the province’s youth with the tools and resources they require to expose themselves to the vast opportunities that are available to them.

“Youth in our area have demonstrated their creativity, ambition and innovative talents through many aspects of their lives,” said Minister Wiseman. “This program will build on their natural talents and give them tools necessary to become successful entrepreneurs.”

Delivered in partnership between the Provincial Government and its community partners – the Community Business Development Corporation (CBDC) and the Entrepreneurs Forum – the program targets individuals up to age 35, youth-run ventures, and not-for-profit organizations with youth-oriented projects to advance entrepreneurship. Community partners will provide market knowledge and support essential skills development by combining academic training with practical projects development.

“CBDCs recognize the critical role youth play in developing a strong business climate in Newfoundland and Labrador,” said Gerry Burke, Chairperson, CBDC. “Our staff have been working to create tools and resources to meet the specific needs of youth entrepreneurs. This new program will help to provide the skills to operate a business and act as a means to build self-confidence and leadership. By empowering youth, we are developing the groundwork to ensure the growth and sustainability of Newfoundland and Labrador.”

For further information about the Young Entrepreneurs and Innovators Program, please visit or view Fact Sheet here: YEIP_Factsheet

Live Rural NL – CCM

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