SPRINT! Ventures Competition


*** Information Session will be planned for January 2019 - watch for a date and room number ***

PURPOSE: The Commercialization Office’s vision and mission is to foster a culture of entrepreneurship and innovation within the University of Lethbridge so society’s medical, social venture, IIoT, AI, Blockchain, environmental, agricultural and other life sci/physical sci challenges are met through the mobilization of creative research endeavours.  Through this opportunity, the UILO will strive to cultivate trans/multidisciplinary collaborations, build student entrepreneurial capacity, provide valuable training opportunities, expand student skill sets, and harness the creative power of the research community to create innovative and technologically-focused solutions in the physical sciences sectors.

Sponsor:                                              UILO and RINSA

Funds:                                                  $3000 CDN seed capital

Runway/Timeline:                             9 months

Call Start Date:                                  January 1st 2019

Submission Deadline:                      January 30th 2019

Review of Proposals:                        February 1st – February 10th, 2019

Interviews with Candidates:          February 15th – 20th, 2019

Decision Date:                                    February 20th, 2019

Grant Start Date:                               March 1st, 2019

Expected New Company

Formation:                                          September 1, 2019 (Approx & Depending on project)


ELIGIBILITY:         Senior undergraduate or graduate student(s) or post-docs at the University of Lethbridge registered


SUBMIT:             [1] 1 page Proposal Overview

                                   “What’s the idea?”, “Why is it so special?” “What medical, agricultural, or environmental challenge does it solve?”

                             [2] 1 page Vision for growth/sustainability

                                    “How do you see working as a team to create value as a young company?”

                                    “Do you have a plan on how to sustain the company’s growth?”

                             [3] Resume (for each team member, as applicable)

                             [4] Transcripts (for each team member, as applicable)

                             [5] Submission to the UILO Manager (See contact info below)



(30%) Proposal to develop protectable intellectual property – what is the idea? Why does a start-up vehicle make sense (rather than e.g. a non-profit model)? Is the proposal proposing an innovation by incorporating technology that would provide tangible value and be able to be protected via a patent?

(30%) Vision for growth and sustainability – identify the challenge, and explain how the protectable idea meets or addresses it in a way that solves the unmet social need and supports the fledgling company financially so it can scale and deliver its product/services more effectively and effectively

(40%) Capability and engagement – assessed by resume, transcripts, and personal interview of short-listed candidates (Attributes relating to focus, drive, coachability, work in a multi-disciplinary team etc)



All submissions will be reviewed by UILO Manager for impact quality, innovation potential, commercial potential, research impact to-date, student’s commitment to learning and broadening their skill set. In addition:

  1. A tenure-track faculty member acting as a mentor and guide for the student.
  2. Funds provided through milestone payments must be used to provide demonstration of IP that builds ongoing value. Eligible: Consultant fees, R&D related expenses.  Inelegible: Salaries, Rents, Educational Materials
  3. UILO will work with the team throughout the R&D and Venture process
  4. IP will be assigned to UILO/University to FACILITATE, MOTIVATE, MENTOR and LEAD the awardees and the IP strategy, Startup and Commercialization activities. The UILO/University will then proceed to protect the invention through patenting or other appropriate method. IP Agreement signed before the SPRINT! funds are released
  5. UILO will assign a Dhillon School of Business student to coordinate commercialization/new venture operations with the awardee.
  6. The awardee must participate in Thrive, Ideation and Entreinvestor[TM] Training Programs to become comfortable with business vernacular and its process
  7. Academic Publication of the research findings via participating Faculty member is mandatory to accompany the commercialization endeavour. Publication would occur after the protection of the invention. The Publication de-risks the innovation and boosts its value to stakeholders such as investors.
  8. ALL proposals are treated in a confidential manner and will only be shared with the review committee.


Let's begin mobilizing innovation!


Contact for more information:

Greg J.A. Vilk, PhD

UILO Manager

University-Industry Liaison Office

University of Lethbridge

[O]: 403-317-2860

[E]: greg.vilk@uleth.ca