As part of the SHAD program in July, teams of participants collaborate, innovate and create a product or service by applying scientific principles, engineering a prototype, and developing business and marketing plans. The national theme is unveiled during the first week of the SHAD program each July.
A winning team is selected at each campus to improve their projects for the national competition – The SHAD - John Dobson Entrepreneurship Cup – held each fall. Every participant has the chance to help with the winning project and cheer for their campus, and Wild Card teams are also selected for the competition.
Competing projects are judged by panels of experts in several distinct categories, and winners are announced at an awards ceremony held annually in October.
The startup experience provided by the SHAD - John Dobson Entrepreneurship Cup leads to a path of innovation for many SHADs. Close to 20% of SHAD alumni have launched at least one startup, with 60% of alumni startups focused on Information and Communications Technology (ICT), digital media, clean tech, life sciences, and engineering. SHAD is demonstrably fueling an innovation culture in Canada.