Become a Member
Interested in becoming a member of the Social Ventures Zone?
Eligibility Questions for becoming an SVZ member:
- Working on a social venture. What does this mean?
- Not yet receiving academic credit for the work you are doing on your social change idea
- A high school graduate (or equivalent)
- 17 years of age or older
- A Canadian citizen, permanent resident, visa/permit holders, or refugee claimant
If you answered 'yes' to all of these, then you are eligible to apply to become an SVZ member.
Incubation or Ideation?
We offer two streams of programming, depending on where you're at.
Please note that in light of COVID-19, all programming will be delivered online until further notice.
- A small number of ventures that have promising initial ideas but require further work are offered places in an eight-week program (four sessions over eight weeks).
- These sessions help entrepreneurs better understand their social issues and share techniques to help them create innovative new ideas to address them.
- At the close of the program, participants graduate and are encouraged to access other resources to continue to build their ideas. Eventually, we hope they can present an idea for consideration for incubation!
- A small number of applicants are selected to pitch the committee.
- A smaller number of applicants are offered admission to our incubation cohort.
- These venture teams are onboarded and then participate in an eight-week cohort program where they will deepen their understanding of their problem and improve the elements of their venture.
- At the close of the cohort sessions, each venture will make a final pitch to the SVZ community and join the broader cohort of SVZ startups. Ongoing participation through social events and workshops starts now!
- At the start of their incubation, they will work with SVZ staff to create a plan to move forward, including identifying goals, setting KPIs and creating a timeline for testing and growth.
- Venture teams will be matched with an SVZ coach that will support their work.
- Ventures can remain a part of the SVZ at no charge for up to two years, provided they continue to actively work on their ventures and benefit from the support provided by the SVZ. Ventures will then graduate from the SVZ and become a senior team or alum.
Applications for the Social Ventures Zone open three times per year: in December, March and August. Our cohorts follow Ryerson University’s semester cycles.
- Wondering how our admissions committee evaluates ventures for incubation? Visit our FAQ page to learn more.
- Looking to get involved in a different way? Here are other ways to join our community.
- View an accessible PDF filePDF version of this webpage.