AlphaS collaborates with the University of Canada West and University of Georgia to identify areas where students need math learning support

AlphaS collaborates with the University of Canada West and University of Georgia to identify areas where students need math learning support

 

Vancouver, B.C, May 15th,  2022AlphaS Data Science Inc., a startup in incubation at Empowered Startups, launched two research projects within Canada and the United States to understand the math abilities and needs of high-school students. The support of the University of Canada West (UCW) and the University of Georgia will equip the founder, Dr. Ivan Lau, with the insights needed to kickstart the product development for AlphaSMath.

The pressure on high-school students to get into university is rising
Having a four-year degree has become almost compulsory, a transformation that is caused by the infusion of tech in new areas of the labour market (Morgan). Manjari Raman, director of Harvard Business School’s project on Managing the Future of Work, describes a degree gap where workers without college degrees retire, and companies aim to replace them with candidates that have a degree. An excellent example to illustrate this shift can be found with production supervisors in 2015, where 67% of job postings ask for a university degree, while only 16% of workers within that position had one (Morgan). This evolution showcases how students will be increasingly under pressure to pursue a college or university degree.

Why good grades and standardized test scores matter
One of the factors that will be assessed when applying for university in Canada is the GPA. The GPA is usually one of the metrics used to identify possible candidates. For example, the average GPA of students admitted to the Bachelor of Commerce program at the University of British Columbia is 92%. It is fair to assume that achieving such a GPA is related to hard work and strategy (Allen Cheng). Universities in the United States do assess GPA, however, SAT plays a more significant role related to their admissions requirements. Therefore, getting a high SAT score can be important for students to get into their dream college. It is recommended for students to study between 10-20 hours per week for 2-3 months to get a good score (Kaptest).

Initial research that guides product development
The University of Canada West (UCW) collected over 4,000 data points related to high schools in Canada during their research. Data has been collected in British Columbia, Calgary, Ontario, and Quebec since the eventual solution from the venture will be most needed in these provinces. The dataset will be a vital asset to analyze potential customer profiles. The University of Georgia has conducted further research to understand where American students need support to feel prepared for the SAT or ACT. Most students indicated that they feel the least comfortable with geometry and lengthy word questions. Further analysis also illustrates that students need help with time management, different problem-solving approaches,  and how to get the correct answers quickly without a calculator.

“Our research revealed a broad range of math capabilities based on schools. I am glad that my students could be part of the solution by supporting Alpha Data Science with the market research needed. I believe that students should have the opportunity to improve their math skills in an unbiased environment. Alpha Data Science’s learning platform can be a vital resource to close this gap.”


Mazyar Zahedi-Seresht, Ph.D., M.Sc., MBA, CIFC – Faculty University of Canada West

Why these collaborations are important
The extensive data set collected by the universities lays the groundwork for the content of the training section of AlphaSMath. The findings will be enhanced with assessment and artificial intelligence to create an adaptive learning experience.

About AlphaS Data Science
The AlphaSMath platform will firstly provide a personal intake assessment, which will be used to define their initial setup for students based on their abilities. The assessment reports will help identify individual strengths, weaknesses, and learning patterns. The ultimate goal is to develop an affordable learning tool that is flexible, customized, and effective, allowing students to gain confidence in their abilities. Like a math tutor online, just quicker, cheaper, and always available.

About Empowered Startups
Empowered Startups is an Innovative Startup Incubator and foundry headquartered in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada. With offices in Canada, France, and Portugal, we train/mentor/ and network entrepreneurs to successfully launch new businesses in diverse markets. As a foundry we also conceive, build and launch our own products and solutions. Empowered Startups is recognized by the Canadian Government as a designated start-up business incubator and is known internationally for growing ideas into sustainable businesses using both a virtual and on-site model. Our training tools and mentorship are used and recognized by leading global university labs, Startup incubators, and innovation hubs. To apply for the Canada Startup Visa Program, visit: www.empoweredstartups.com

Dr. Ivan Lau – Founder and CEO – [email protected]
Address: Unit 420 – 744 West Hastings Street
Vancouver, BC V6C 1A5
Website

Photo by Max Fischer

FurrySitter Launches New Pet Sitting Platform to Care for Furry Family Members

FurrySitter Launches New Pet Sitting Platform to Care for Furry Family Members

FurrySitter, a Vancouver-based pet care platform offering pet sitting services from trusted professionals, in incubation at Empowered Startups, has officially launched its website and online booking portal. After seeing a gap in the market for highly qualified on demand pet care services, Sandy Tang, founder and CEO, created FurrySitter to connect certified pet care professionals with pet owners looking for instant pet care services. FurrySitter prioritizes sourcing pet care professionals that are vetted, trustworthy, experienced, and dependable to provide superior petting sitting services compared to market alternatives.

“We see pet care as an experience, not a service. Therefore, we strive to work on bringing a happier life to our pets and pet-loving people no matter pet parents or pet sitters.” – Sandy Tang, Founder of FurrySitter

Pet owners looking for trusted pet care services
For pet owners, it can be challenging to find reliable trusted pet care professionals online that can fit their pet’s specific health, temperament and exercise requirements. FurrySitter seeks to alleviate these challenges by creating a platform that offers safe and reliable pet care services with vetted professionals and experienced providers. Unlike other online pet care platforms, FurrySitter has implemented a comprehensive due diligence process and mandatory training to ensure pet care providers are equipped with the skills to ensure pets are properly cared for. By instilling a comprehensive four step vetting process, pet owners can rest assured that their pets will receive top tier pet care.

Experienced animal care professionals earn extra cash
FurrySitter offers experienced pet care professionals the opportunity to enjoy flexible work hours, easy payment systems, and access to a wide network of nearby customers. After signing up as a sitter and completing the due diligence process, pet care professionals are given access to a network of customers in their area for daily pet care services.

Create an account and get started today
Join the FurrySitter network to join the community of passionate pet care providers and compassionate pet owners. FurrySitter offers a variety of services to suit your pets needs, including dog walking, drop-in visits, and overnight care. The FurrySitter platform is built on reviews, feedback, and communication to ensure that all pet owners are matched with vetted skilled professionals.

About FurrySitter
FurrySitter, founded in September 2020, is an innovator and disruptor in the online animal pet care industry. It’s online booking platform is an easy way to get connected with top tier pet care providers, and for experienced pet care professionals to earn extra income with flexible work hours.

About Empowered Startups
Empowered Startups is an Innovative Startup Incubator and foundry headquartered in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada. With offices in Canada, France, and Portugal, we train/mentor/ and network entrepreneurs to successfully launch new businesses in diverse markets. As a foundry we also conceive, build and launch our own products and solutions. Empowered Startups is recognized by the Canadian Government as a designated start-up business incubator and is known internationally for growing ideas into sustainable businesses using both a virtual and on-site model. Our training tools and mentorship are used and recognized by leading global university labs, Startup incubators, and innovation hubs. To apply for the Canada Startup Visa Program, visit: www.empoweredstartups.com

Sandy Tang – Founder and CEO
Address: Unit 420 – 744 West Hastings Street
Vancouver, BC V6C 1A5
Website
Instagram
Facebook
Contact Us

Photo by Artem Beliaikin

HUMUZ Secures Mitacs Grant to Optimize its Indoor Growing System

HUMUZ Secures Mitacs Grant to Optimize its Indoor Growing System

Vancouver, B.C. – Humuz Farm Inc, a startup in incubation at Empowered Startups, is pleased to announce it has been awarded a $60,000 Mitacs grant to optimize its indoor growing system in collaboration with the University of Alberta.

Research on growing inputs critical to leverage technology
HUMUZ’s mission is to make home growing both easy and aesthetically pleasing. Over the next year a post-doctorate from the University of Alberta will be joining HUMUZ to optimize seed selection and growing inputs for indoor hydroponic farming; key factors in successfully growing at home.

“We are excited to be working with University of Alberta on this project. When it comes to growing, great technology only gets you halfway there. This research project is critical to enable us to optimize the growing inputs that go alongside our technology. It is great to have programs like Mitacs supporting us in a way that not only benefits us but also the industry.” – Brian, Tak Yu Fung, Founder and CEO of HUMUZ

As a result of this research HUMUZ will be able to create an experience that makes home growing accessible to common individuals and encourages urbanites to successfully grow their favourite plants for fun and well-being all year round. It will also provide HUMUZ a secondary revenue stream by selling the seeds that are optimal for its home growing system.

Home growing has wide ranging benefits
Research shows that having plants in the home reduces stress and can improve air quality. Growing pesticide-free food at home also provides nutritional benefits and unmatched freshness. Not to mention the environmental impact of a zero-mile diet and cost control over escalating grocery costs.

Th need for home growing systems continues to increase but to date there have been no solutions that make consumers want to bring them into their homes with a design that fits with home décors.

“We think by making growing at home both easy and beautiful, HUMUZ can increase the adoption of indoor home growing systems. With all the benefits of growing food indoors at home, HUMUZ is feeding people’s minds, bodies, and souls.” – Brian, Tak Yu Fung, Founder and CEO, HUMUZ Farm Inc.

For more information on HUMUZ’s mission please check out its website and contact details below.

About Empowered Startups
Empowered Startups is an Innovative Startup Incubator and foundry headquartered in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada. With offices in Canada, France, and Portugal, we train/mentor/ and network entrepreneurs to successfully launch new businesses in diverse markets. As a foundry we also conceive, build and launch our own products and solutions. Empowered Startups is recognized by the Canadian Government as a designated start-up business incubator and is known internationally for growing ideas into sustainable businesses using both a virtual and on-site model. Our training tools and mentorship are used and recognized by leading global university labs, Startup incubators, and innovation hubs. To apply for the Canada Startup Visa Program, visit: www.empoweredstartups.com

About HUMUZ Farm Inc.
HUMUZ Farm Inc, founded in 2021, reimagines what is possible to help people to stay close to nature and enjoy their time and space at home. We are combining the knowledge of plant science, aesthetics, and the art of lighting to create a happy growing experience that makes it easy to customers to refresh and re-style their own space with a beautiful home growing system.

Our intended impact is for everyone to have their lives and homes or workspaces to be enlivened with vibrant growth and elegant lighting from a HUMUZ IoT hydroponic system.

Brian, Tak Yu Fung – Founder and CEO
Email: [email protected]
Address:    420 – 744 West Hastings Street
Vancouver, BC, V6C 1A5
Website
LinkedIn

Photo by laura s on Unsplash

MED-iBOX Secures Mitacs Grant for Independent Pharmacy Engagement

MED-iBOX Secures Mitacs Grant for Independent Pharmacy Engagement

Vancouver, B.C. –MED-iBOX Solutions Inc, a startup in incubation at Empowered Startups, is pleased to announce it has been awarded a Mitacs grant to engage with independent pharmacies on developing a digital product that transforms how their customers manage over-the-counter medicines.

Industry engagement to occur over the next 4 months

Over the next 4-months MED-iBOX will be going through an intense industry engagement to better understand the challenges independent pharmacies face from increased competition as self-care goes digital. Through this process it will refine its launch product that supports independent pharmacies, which are valuable local businesses, to better compete with both digital and big-box alternatives.

Over the past 10-years I have seen the increasing challenges faced by independent pharmacies. We think there is a way to strengthen what they do best, which is build relationships with their customers, by providing a digital platform to help pharmacies keep their customers up to date on their needs.” – Justin Vu, Founder and CEO of MED-iBOX Solutions Inc.

Through the Mitacs grant, MED-iBOX has recruited two interns to support this industry engagement. One Masters of Technology intern experienced in digital transformation from Saint Mary’s University and one intern from Ivey Business School at Western University.

We have built a diverse team with a well-rounded skill set and are excited to launch this industry engagement. We are confident that over the next 4-months we will uncover a path that will create value for independent pharmacies and their customers. We are grateful for Mitacs’ support.” – Justin Vu, Founder and CEO of MED-iBOX Solutions Inc.

Contact MED-iBOX to learn more

Independent pharmacies interested in learning more about MED-iBOX and the industry engagement process can reach out to MED-iBOX through its social channels.

About MED-iBOX Solutions

MED-iBOX Solutions Inc, founded in 2021, is a Vancouver-based software-as-a-service startup in the healthcare industry. MED-iBOX Solutions Inc is passionate about developing software tools that enhance the competitiveness of independent pharmacies while enabling their customers to live healthy lives. Founded by Justin Vu, an entrepreneur with more than 10-years of experience in distributing healthcare products, we are a mission-driven team transforming consumer’s over-the-counter (OTC) medicine cabinet to allow independent pharmacies to increase customer touchpoints and promote healthcare products around consumer’ needs and their desires for self-care in a digital world.

Justin Vu – Founder and CEO
Email: [email protected]
Address:    420-744 West Hastings Street
Vancouver, BC, V6C 1A5
LinkedIn

About Empowered Startups

Empowered Startups is an Innovative Startup Incubator and foundry headquartered in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada. With offices in Canada, France, and Portugal, we train/mentor/ and network entrepreneurs to successfully launch new businesses in diverse markets. As a foundry we also conceive, build and launch our own products and solutions. Empowered Startups is recognized by the Canadian Government as a designated start-up business incubator and is known internationally for growing ideas into sustainable businesses using both a virtual and on-site model. Our training tools and mentorship are used and recognized by leading global university labs, Startup incubators, and innovation hubs.

Photo by Anna Tarazevich from Pexels

Alberta Is Working to Become a Major Tech Hub

Alberta Is Working to Become a Major Tech Hub

In a recently published interview with BetaKit, Doug Schweitzer, Alberta’s Minister of Jobs, Economy, and innovation, spoke about how Alberta’s tech sector is seeing fantastic growth. Additionally, the Alberta Enterprise Corporation published a report that found that the Alberta tech ecosystem is showing signs of momentum (Alberta is home to more than 3,000 technology companies, a 233 per cent increase since 2012 – if that’s not momentum we don’t know what is).

Alberta’s budget specifically called out the need to: “recognize and adapt to emerging trends. Increased automation and digitization, globalization and remote work, green technology, an aging population, continued urbanization, and migration all have the potential to significantly transform Alberta’s economy in the future. We need to develop skills today that will allow our labour market to readily adapt to future challenges.”

The Alberta Technology and Innovation Strategy that was laid out is set to receive $73 million over three years. The strategy envisions Alberta becoming an internationally recognized technology and innovation hub making Alberta a leader in areas such as artificial intelligence and quantum science.

You can read more about which cities and regions are dominating the Canadian startup scene in this article from Curiocity.  

Based on all of this, if you’re an international founder looking to participate in the Canadian ecosystem, it’s time to have a look at Alberta. The province has even created their own Alberta Foreign Graduate Entrepreneur Stream for innovators from abroad – which is similar to the Canada Startup Visa. The Foreign Graduate Entrepreneur Stream is an immigration program that nominates talented and qualified foreign educated graduates from outside Canada for permanent residence when they start-up an innovative business in Alberta. The Foreign Graduate Entrepreneur Stream is a collaboration between the Alberta Advantage Immigration Program (AAIP) and approved designated agencies, like Empowered Startups.

For more information on how to qualify for the Foreign Graduate Entrepreneur Stream, we have a blog post with all of the requirements here.

To apply for the Alberta Foreign Graduate Entrepreneur Stream, click here.

To apply for the Canada Startup Visa Program, click here.

Government of Canada Federal Budget 2022

Government of Canada Federal Budget 2022

Yesterday the Canadian Government released their 2022 budget. Included in the budget is  a new federal innovation agency to support both startups and legacy companies, and $3-billion in new spending on innovation.

Here’s a brief Executive Summary on the Canadian Federal 2022 Budget Related to Startups / The Canada Startup Visa Program: 

  • Establishment of a Canada Growth Fund attract substantial private sector investment;
  • Creation of a Canadian Innovation and Investment Agency to invest in innovation, research, and development;
  • Rebrand and $750 million for Superclusters;
  • Review of Scientific Research and Experimental Development (SR&ED);
  • Extending phase out of small business tax rate from $15 million to $50 million;
  • $45 million for semiconductor industry;
  • $30 million for CAN Health Network;
  • $875.2 million over 5 years to address cyber threats;
  • $17.7 million over 5 years for the Communications Security Establishment (CSE) to establish an academic research programs on cutting-edge technologies;
  • Amendments to the Competition Act;
    More capital for National Intellectual Property Strategy;
  • $25 million for the Research Support Fund;
    Creation of the Employee Ownership Trust
  • $2.6 billion for a carbon-capture, utilization, storage tax credit;
    $2.2 billion for the Low Carbon Economy Fund;
  • $780 million to expand Nature Smart Climate Solutions Fund.

“This is an innovation budget through and through,” said Benjamin Bergen, president of the Council of Canadian Innovators. “With a clear focus on supporting Canadian innovators, bolstering intellectual property generation, driving clean economic growth, and doubling-down on Canada’s fastest-growing sectors in the years to come.”

To view the entire Canadian Federal Budget for 2022 Click Here

Empowered Startups is an Innovative Startup Incubator and foundry headquartered in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada. With offices in Canada, France, and Portugal, we train/mentor/ and network entrepreneurs to successfully launch new businesses in diverse markets. As a foundry we also conceive, build and launch our own products and solutions. Empowered Startups is recognized by the Canadian Government as a designated start-up business incubator and is known internationally for growing ideas into sustainable businesses using both a virtual and on-site model. Our training tools and mentorship are used and recognized by leading global university labs, Startup incubators, and innovation hubs.

Photo by Daniel Joseph Petty – Pexels