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The Digital Media Zone - partnering entrepreneurship with university

Opened in 2010, Ryerson University’s Digital Media Zone is a workplace & incubator designed for young entrepreneurs, infused with the energy & resources of downtown Toronto. It is a space for both current students & alumni.

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Young people are eager to start a business, make a product, or develop ideas. They have all this but what they don't have is the space to do it. The Digital Media Zone (DMZ) gives the resources & experience to turn ideas into reality by providing workspace, equipment, a workplace with like-minded individuals, business plan counselling, mentoring, workshops, networking opportunities, & industry showcasing at no cost to the Ryerson University students/ alumni. With significantly reduced start-up costs, entrepreneurs can focus on getting their product out the door & launch their own small business at the same time. This is also a great way for the university to support student ideas & initiatives as well as help them prepare for life after university if they always planned on starting a business. Students are able to work in 'The Zone' while completing their degrees & can graduate with a successful company. It is a transformation in higher education.

"Ultimately this is about education, about young people learning how to be entrepreneurs," said  Sheldon Levy , President, Ryerson University. "Students & young people are major contributors to the innovation agenda, & their ideas & energy are incredible. At a university, pure research is essential, but so is encouraging & showcasing emerging talent & connecting students & young alumni to private & public sector industry. "

Since opening in 2012 The DMZ has graduated 8 companies & is currently incubating 32. In Spring 2012 they will expand their office space to incubate 50 new innovators.


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