Academic News

Business and Management

Sprint to Innovate: The Innovation Challenge Powered by Canada Life

July 24, 2023

REGISTRATION – We have reached our registration capacity. Thank you for your interest.

Sprint to Innovate, powered by Canada Life, brings together post-secondary students from varied disciplines such as technology, business, entrepreneurship, and more. Sprint to Innovate is brought to you by University of Manitoba – Faculty of Science, Red River College Polytechnic, and Tech Manitoba. All Winnipeg Post Secondary Students are invited to participate. Students will learn about innovation while collaborating in a fun and exciting challenge to build a minimum viable prototype in two days.

We are pleased to announce that our next Sprint to Innovate: The Innovation Challenge is the weekend of February 1 to 4, 2024! This year we will be starting the event with a Networking session on Thursday, February 1 with a keynote speaker at University of Manitoba.

We invite all companies to review our sponsorship and mentorship opportunities, and to consider submitting a business challenge; and for post-secondary students to consider participating.

HOW THE EVENT WORKS

Teams of 4 to 6 students will choose from available business challenges provided by industry. Students will then work together with support from mentors to create a solution, including developing a prototype to be presented to judges on the final day. Thanks to our sponsors there is $11,000 in prize money!

A prototype is a simple experimental model of the proposed product used to learn from. Prototypes range from low-fidelity (paper-based) prototypes that are used to explain concepts all the way to high-fidelity prototypes that have functional elements with more detail.  Teams may consist of technology and business students.

HOW TO GET INVOLVED

As an Organization

  1. Sponsor the event.
  2. Volunteer your time as a mentor.
  3. Provide us with a Business Challenge that your organization has by emailing ckubara@rrc.ca or sgrusko@rrc.ca.

As a Student

Students from any Manitoba post-secondary student may participate in a team at Sprint to Innovate.

Students may register a team of 4 to 6 students. Register by Friday, January 19, 2024. REGISTRATION has reached capacity and is now closed.

Title Sponsor

Thank you to our Title Sponsor Canada Life!

Refreshment Sponsor

Thank you to our Refreshment Sponsor Access Credit Union.

Networking Event Sponsor

Thank you to our Networking Event Sponsor Bioscience Association Manitoba

Event Sponsors

Thank you to our Event Sponsors.

Challenges

CHALLENGE #1 How might we raise cybersecurity awareness and preparedness among SMEs and small and medium-sized non-profits? – Popp3r Cybersecurity

CHALLENGE #2 How might we create a safer and more secure Winnipeg, significantly improving the well-being of its citizens in their daily lives and places of work? – City of Winnipeg

CHALLENGE #3 How can we create opportunities for post-secondary students to connect with their peers and give students the best chance at developing new friendships and connections? – My Student Wellbeing

CHALLENGE #4 How can we use technology to help improve the mental well-being of Canadians? – Canada Life

CHALLENGE #5 How can we revamp Riipen’s user experience, leveraging innovative strategies and potentially AI, to empower learners in discovering, registering for, and engaging in meaningful work-integrated learning projects? – Riipen

CHALLENGE #6 How might the Canadian Information Processing Society (CIPS) develop a program focused on enhancing and supporting the careers of students and early-stage IT professionals? – CIPS

Sponsorship Opportunities

REFRESHMENT SPONSORSHIP – $3500

We are looking for a sponsor to provide $3500 for
our student participants on Sunday, February 4.
Your $3,500 sponsorship would earn you:

  • Recognition on Sunday, February 4 at our
    refreshment table at breakfast, snack, and
    lunch
  • Recognition on event materials, website and
    registration.
  • Social media recognition
  • The opportunity to be a mentor to a team
    throughout the weekend.

EVENT SPONSORSHIP – $1000

We are looking for sponsors to provide $1000
towards prize money to the winning teams.
Your $1,000 sponsorship would earn you:

  • Recognition throughout the event
  • Recognition on event materials
  • Social media recognition
  • The opportunity to be a mentor to a team
    throughout the weekend.

Be a Mentor

We are looking for professionals to mentor one team throughout the Sprint to Innovate event weekend.

Mentors are asked to provide well-rounded support to their student team in the following area.

  • Help the team establish and foster a positive
    team environment
  • Provide ideation tips and tricks
  • Advise on prototype development
  • Advise on pitch preparation
  • Review final pitch presentation and provide
    advice
  • Be available for support throughout the weekend

Provide a Business Challenge

Student teams will be provided with a list of business challenges that they will have a choice between to work on. This is where you come in! We are asking a few different companies to provide a general business challenge and students would create a solution.
Do you have a general business challenge that our student teams can help solve?
Commitment:

  • Prepare your Challenge Information document with Challenge Context and background, a description, challenge statement, and relevant resources.
  • Prepare a 2-3 minute video pitching your business challenge outlining what the problem is, and why you need it.
  • Assign at least one person to speak about the problem and be prepared to answer questions about it from a student team on Friday, February 2 (Around 4:00/5:00 PM).
  • Available to answer questions from the teams on Saturday
  • Attend and judge the final presentations for your Challenge on Sunday to see what solutions the teams came up with; select one team to advance to the finals.

Employer Information Session: How to Engage with IT Students

September 21, 2022

You’re invited to an information session on how your organization can support student work-integrated learning.

Information Technology Students are available for co-ops, applied research, and industry projects.
 

Exterior view of Manitou a bi Bii daziigae at Princess St and Elgin Ave
Exterior view of Manitou a bi Bii daziigae at Princess St. and Elgin Ave.

Would you like to make a positive, direct impact on the next generation of IT professionals? Join us for an information session in person or virtually on:

Date: Wednesday, November 23, 2022
Time: 9:00 AM to 11:00 AM
Location: Manitou a bi Bii daziigae, Roundhouse at 319 Elgin Avenue (view on Google Maps) (or virtually).

We would love to meet you to discuss how you and your organization can allow technology students to apply their learning through a co-op, industry project, or applied research project. You will hear from other businesses that have worked with our students.

Read More →

Sprint to Innovate: The Innovation Challenge

September 12, 2022

Brought to you by Red River College Polytechnic, Tech Manitoba, and Faculty of Science-UM

Sprint to Innovate brings together post-secondary students from varied disciplines such as technology, business, entrepreneurship, and more. Manitoba students, and invited international partner institutions, will learn about innovation while collaborating in a fun and exciting challenge to build a minimum viable prototype in two days.

We are pleased to announce that our next Sprint to Innovate: The Innovation Challenge presented by Access Credit Union is the weekend of January 27 to 29, 2023! This year we will be starting the event with a Networking session on Thursday, January 26 with keynote speaker Michael Henderson, Managing Director at Ubisoft Winnipeg.

We invite all companies to review our sponsorship and mentorship opportunities, and to consider submitting a business challenge; and for post-secondary students to consider participating.

HOW THE EVENT WORKS

Teams of 4 to 6 students will choose from available business challenges provided by industry. Students will then work together with support from mentors to create a solution, including developing a prototype to be presented to judges on the final day.

A prototype is a simple experimental model of the proposed product used to learn from. Prototypes range from low-fidelity (paper-based) prototypes that are used to explain concepts all the way to high-fidelity prototypes that have functional elements with more detail.  Teams may consist of technology and business students.

HOW TO GET INVOLVED

As an Organization

  1. Sponsor the event.
  2. Volunteer your time as a mentor.
  3. Provide us with a Business Challenge that your organization has.

As a Student

Students from any Manitoba post-secondary student may participate in a team at Sprint to Innovate.

Students may register a team of 4 to 6 students. You may register as an individual if you would like to be added to a team. Register today for a chance to win $15,000 in prize money!

Registration is closed.

Keynote Speaker

All attendees are invited to our Networking and Keynote on Thursday, January 26 at Red River College Polytechnic – Manitou a bi Bii daziigae.

Michael Henderson, Managing Director at Ubisoft Winnipeg

Originally from California, Michael Henderson spent more than 20 years in the film industry in feature animation and visual effects before joining Ubisoft. His work includes time with the core technology group of Disney and founding the production engineering team Dreamworks Animation. he then took on studio leadership, opening international studios in both India and China before returning to the United States as a production executive. He joined Ubisoft Winnipeg in 2020 as the Director of Technology and took over the role of Managing Director for the studio in 2021.

Event Schedule

Networking EventThursday, January 26, 20234:00 PM – 6:00 PMRRC Polytech – Agora Manitou a bi Bii daziigae
Kick-Off/TrainingFriday, January 27, 20231:00 PM – 4:00 PMVirtual
Challenge Work BeginsFriday, January 27, 2023EveningVirtual
Challenge Work ContinuesSaturday, January 28, 2023Day-longVirtual
Challenge Work ContinuesSunday, January 29, 2023 MorningRRC Polytech – Manitou a bi Bii daziigae Campus
Semi-Final &
Final Presentation
Sunday, January 29, 20231:00 PM – 5:00 PMRRC Polytech – Roundhouse – Manitou a bi Bii daziigae

Challenge Statements

CHALLENGE #1 Campus Safety

How might we create and deliver Campus and bus safety training for post-secondary students, and a system for reminders to help these practices become habit. – Dan Saltel

CHALLENGE #2 Fintech Startup, Access Credit Union

Open banking is set to change financial services in Canada. Design a fintech (financial technology)start-up company that leverages open banking principles and design a new innovative payment or financial service for a Manitoba Credit Union System. – Access Credit Union

CHALLENGE #3 Renterii Challenge

Renterii is a platform that allows rental merchants and individuals to lend their items or space.   How might we incentivize existing rental merchants to use the Renterii platform in a low-cost or cost-effective manner?

CHALLENGE #4 City of Winnipeg Snow Clearing

How can we change the City of Winnipeg snow clearing into the smartest snow clearing in Canada? – City of Winnipeg

CHALLENGE #5 IntegrationWorx – Engaging Virtual Office

Integrationworx has no physical office.  How can we foster an engaging work environment and company culture, when all employees work virtually and are located across Canada? – IntegrationWorx

CHALLENGE # 6 Selection of Candidates – CIPS

How might we develop a system using the SFIA Skills Credentialing Framework to objectively and responsibly evaluate job candidates and candidate resumes, while improving over time? – CIPS Manitoba

CHALLENGE #7 I’m Leaving On A JetPlane

How might we engage passengers post-security while they wait for their flight to board. – Winnipeg Richardson Airport

Sponsorship

Thank you to our Title sponsor Access Credit Union, Support sponsor BHER, and Event sponsors City of Winnipeg, Riipen, InvisionEdge, University of Manitoba-Faculty of Science, Red River Mutual, CIPS Manitoba, National Research Council Canada, and Integrationworx. We have $15,000 in prize money for our winning teams!

EVENT SPONSORSHIP – $1000

We are looking for sponsors to provide $1000 towards prize money to the winning teams.

Your $1,000 sponsorship would earn you:

·Recognition throughout the event

·Recognition on event materials

·Social media recognition

·The opportunity to be a mentor to a team throughout the weekend.

Email Cristy at ckubara@rrc.ca for more information

Be A Mentor

Our Sprint to Innovate mentorship team will specialize in the following areas to provide well-rounded support to the student teams throughout the weekend.

·Help the team establish and foster a positive team environment

·Provide ideation tips and tricks

·Advise on prototype development

·Advise on pitch preparation

·Review final pitch presentation and provide advice

Email Cristy at ckubara@rrc.ca for more information

Provide a Business Challenge

Student teams will be provided with a list of business challenges that they will have a choice between to work on.  This is where you come in!  We are asking a few different companies to provide a general business challenge and students would create a solution. 

Do you have a general business challenge that our student teams can help solve? 

Email Cristy at ckubara@rrc.ca for more information

Student Information

Do you want to learn how to be innovative, and win some money?
Sprint to Innovate is about learning innovation, being innovative, building deeper relationships, problem-solving and developing solutions to real business challenges. Whether you win, or not, you will have the skills to innovate, problem-solve, and work as a team.

How the event works
Teams of 4 to 6 students will choose from a variety of business challenges provided by industry. Students and mentors will then work together on a solution, including developing a prototype to be presented to judges on the final day. A prototype is a simple experimental model of the proposed product used to learn from. Prototypes range from low-fidelity (paper-based) prototypes that are used to explain concepts all the way to high-fidelity prototypes that have functional elements with more detail. Teams may consist of technology and business students.

As part of the weekend festivities, student groups will attend various workshop sessions. Facilitators will be leading workshops on Innovation, requirement gathering skills, mind mapping, the design sprint, and to help them get started thinking innovatively.  The workshops will be integrated within the challenge and throughout the weekend.

What to expect

  • To attend the orientation, networking, and kick-off training sessions
  • Work on a real business challenge
  • Meeting with a client regarding the challenge
  • Business mentorship
  • Teamwork experience
  • Sunday pitch presentations to judges, participants, and mentors

Sprint to Innovate Competition Guidelines

Prize Money

Semi-Final Challenge Prize

The winning team that is selected to advance to the Final Presentations will be awarded $550.

Final Presentation Prizes

First Place – $6000

Second Place – $3000

Third Place – $2150

Register A Team

Registration is closed.

2022 ACME Virtual Awards Ceremony

May 11, 2022

The Applied Commerce and Management Education department is excited to present the 2022 Virtual Awards Ceremony to be held on Wednesday, June 8, 2022, at 5:30 p.m. CST. Our students have had to adapt to a changing environment, while maintaining a high standard of academic achievement and they deserve to be recognized!! Many of these awards would not be possible without the steadfast support of our donors and we are so grateful for their continuous support.

Please visit www.facebook.com/redrivercollege on June 8 to honour and recognize our students for their tenacity and hard work. If you miss the scheduled time, don’t worry, this presentation will be posted after the event is over to watch at your convenience.

View the ACME Awards Program ›

Congratulations again to all award recipients!

ACME Awards Ceremony

May 18, 2021

The Applied Commerce and Management Education department is excited to present the 2021 Virtual ACME Awards Ceremony, to be held on Wednesday, May 26, 2021 at 5:30 p.m. CT.

Our students have had to adapt to a changing environment, while maintaining a high standard of academic achievement and they deserve to be recognized! Many of these awards would not be possible without the steadfast support of our donors and we are so grateful for their continuous support.

Watch the ceremony on Facebook at 5:30 p.m. on May 26 to honour and recognize our students for their tenacity and hard work.

If you cannot attend the event live, you can visit the RRC Facebook page to view the recording at your convenience after the live date.

Congratulations again to all award recipients!

View the ACME Awards Program ›

Get Out Of Their Way

April 6, 2021

There is a motto attributed to a few business leaders like Steve Jobs, Richard Branson, and Lee Iaccoca that basically says “hire smart people and get out of their way”. The last class of the Entrepreneurship Practicum course in the Business Administration program at RRC just demonstrated why this might be accurate.

For decades, Entrepreneurship Practicum served as the capstone course for the program. Over 30 teams of 10-15 students from all of the RRC campuses poured themselves into the creation of a business plan, which they ultimately displayed via a booth at the highly anticipated tradeshow, as well as by delivering an oral presentations to members of Manitoba’s business community. Due to Covid-19 restrictions and the organizational decisions to push the classroom online for the final year of the capstone course, a huge void was created in how to allow the students to demonstrate the culmination of their studies in the program. With the in-person oral presentations not possible, and a tradeshow being out of the question, the instructors in the program had to come up with a solution.

The solution for the presentations was easy, move them to Webex for a virtual presentation. These went as smoothly as any presentations could be with over 300 students, nearly 40 judges and 10 facilitators. The groups demonstrated their skills and knowledge to the business community in an impressive manner. However the trade-show aspect was still missing. The instructors scrambled quickly to create a virtual assignment that would allow students to demonstrate their business concept without having people gather. The replacement assignment was to create a 2 minute long video demonstrating the 4 “P’s” of marketing, (Product, Price, Place and Promotion) for their business concept. Essentially it was for the groups to create an infomercial.

The video was not an easy thing to pull off, as the groups are not made of experienced videographers, actors, directors, editors, or animators. The groups also could not get together in person, and their budgets were near zero. Add in the fact that this portion of the project amounted to only 10 percent of their grade, and the expectation was that the videos were going to be “OK” at best. Here is the part where “getting out of smart people’s way” comes in to play.

Many of the videos created were professional quality, extremely creative, covered the required material, were uplifting and demonstrated the wherewithal of our student body. Rather than do the bare minimum, students went out of their way to create something that captured the essence of their abilities. They created a 2 minute video that encapsulated their knowledge, hard-work, creativity and most importantly their spirit in trying times! The future of Manitoba business is in good hands as demonstrated by the class of 2021 – all we have to do is get out of their way.

Please click on the logos below to watch the videos created by students.

Video Links
















Suzanne Lahr’s Story

March 30, 2021

The following are responses from Suzanne Lahr, a graduate of Hotel and Restaurant Management.

Where do you work and what’s your current position?

I’m an Event Coordinator at the RBC Convention Centre in Winnipeg.

What are three career steps you’ve taken since graduating from Red River College?

  1. Completed my bachelor’s degree in Hotel and Resort Management at the University of Calgary.
  2. Held various positions with Delta Hotels across Western Canada.
  3. Refreshed my skills and education with various courses, including MTEC, ATEC, and other certificate courses.

What’s a highlight of your professional life after graduation?

My biggest highlights have been working on the 2014 JUNOS Gala Dinner and Awards, and the 2015 Grey Cup Festival.

How did your time at Red River College help you achieve your goals?

The practical and hands-on knowledge that I received at Red River College, along with the ongoing support from the faculty, has been invaluable.

Mitch Hyndman’s Story

March 30, 2021

The following are responses from Mitch Hyndman, a 2007 graduate of Hotel and Restaurant Management.

Where do you work and what’s your current position?

I am the Brand Home Manager for Church Road Winery. Although we are owned by Pernod Ricard Winemakers, we are the second-largest alcohol and wine producer in the world. Other brands within our portfolio that you may be familiar with are Absolut Vodka, Chivas Regal, Beefeater Gin, Brancott Estate and Mumm. Within Pernod Ricard there are 52 Brand homes worldwide.

Church Road is one of the oldest and most awarded wineries in New Zealand and has wines that range from $20-250 per bottle.

What are three career steps you’ve taken since graduating from Red River College?

  1. In-Room Dining Attendant – Fairmont Winnipeg – Making moments into memories, life is about experiences. Some of the smallest gestures can change a person’s day. Every day gives the opportunity to make these memories and the smallest details matter.
  2. Front Office Manager – The Farm at Cape Kidnappers – Understanding expectations; everyone is different. How do you manage them? At this level, multiple small errors can become a big issue with one’s realm of expectations. The Farm at Cape Kidnappers is a Relaix Chateau Luxury Lodge.
  3. Brand Home Manager – Church Road Winery – #everydetailsmatters, Premium Brand, Premium Products, Premium Experiences. I feel I have an interesting role as it is to balance our consumers’ expectations while giving the best experience possible by conveying my passion for experiences!

What are some highlights of your professional life after graduation?

  1. Working with someone who could arguable be New Zealand’s best Wine Maker to make experience’s at Church Road.
  2. Meeting some famous Chefs /Golfers – Rick Stein, Heston Blumenthal, Thomas Keller, Steve Williams (Tiger’s Caddie).
  3. Meeting travelers from basically my home town on the opposite side of the world. The world is smaller than you think.

How did your time at Red River College help you achieve your goals?

Red River College gave me a great framework to work from and a basic understanding of tourism. The experience that I gained from RRC kindled my passion for experiences, especially food and wine. I love food and wine and will further follow cuisine throughout the world. Life is about experiences especially the ones you can share. Pernod Ricard has 19,000 employees and the opportunities are endless.

Lisa Hunt’s Story

March 30, 2021

The following are responses from Lisa Hunt, a 2015 graduate of Hotel and Restaurant Management.

Where do you work and what’s your current position?

I am currently the Events & Volunteer Planner for the University of Manitoba Students’ Union (UMSU). I also work part-time as a Lead Wedding Coordinator with Alexandra Lillian Weddings & Events.

What are three career steps you’ve taken since graduating from Red River College?

Since graduating, I have:

  1. Attended volunteer management workshops to bridge the gap between event planning and running fundraising and volunteer programs
  2. Worked at national and local charities and not-for-profits managing volunteers and coordinating signature events
  3. Joined an event planning business to assist with, and ultimately coordinate, weddings

What’s a highlight of your professional life after graduation?

One of the biggest highlights of my professional career was the first wedding I had the opportunity to be the Lead Coordinator on. It gave me a huge confidence boost that I have carried throughout my career in the varied events I have coordinated since. Helping a couple to see the wedding they dreamed of come to life is one of the best feelings, and so special to be able to share with them.

How did your time at Red River College help you achieve your goals?

The program at Red River College helped to prepare me for these opportunities by providing me with the hands-on experience of co-op work placements tailored specifically to my chosen path. The support of the instructors was invaluable. They shared knowledge and advice that helped give me a positive edge on getting into the workforce.

Lisa Harms’ Story

March 30, 2021

The following are responses from Lisa Harms, a 2012 graduate of Tourism Management.

Where do you work and what’s your current position?

I am currently the Team Lead, Events and Catering at Assiniboine Park Conservancy.

What some career steps you’ve taken since graduating from Red River College?

Since graduation, I have worked for Assiniboine Park Conservancy. I started as a Park Event Assistant (seasonal position) during my first year of co-op and after graduation I was hired as an Event Coordinator, where I’ve since been promoted to Team Lead.

What’s a highlight of your professional life after graduation?

Being prompted to Team Lead was a big highlight for me. Seeing all my hard work and dedication for my job being rewarded in that way was a major accomplishment. Another highlight is planning and executing many of the events within Assiniboine Park. Being part of so many fundraising events that are making a difference in the city is a very heartwarming and humbling experience.

How did your time at Red River College help you achieve your goals?

Red River College taught me the value of working hard and pushing myself to achieve my goals. I have been able to grow and further my career at Assiniboine Park because of my co-p placement. That first summer, I was able to show my skills RRC had taught me which was one of the reasons I was hired back as an Event Coordinator after graduation and have since been able to grow within the organization.

RRC Polytech campuses are located on the lands of Anishinaabe, Ininiwak, Anishininew, Dakota, and Dené, and the National Homeland of the Red River Métis.

We recognize and honour Treaty 3 Territory Shoal Lake 40 First Nation, the source of Winnipeg’s clean drinking water. In addition, we acknowledge Treaty Territories which provide us with access to electricity we use in both our personal and professional lives.

Learn more ›