Bootcamp and Cup

Growing the entrepreneurial mindset

The McGill Dobson Bootcamp & Cup Competition aims to ignite and cultivate an entrepreneurial mindset. Throughout the Bootcamp, teams broaden their entrepreneurial skills by participating in targeted workshops covering topics such as value creation, market research, financial basics, and storytelling, in addition to pitch practices and coaching sessions.

The Cup Competition awards the strongest teams up to $200,000 in prize money across four categories:

  • Health Sciences Enterprise Track​
  • Technology Driven Enterprise Track​
  • Social Impact Enterprise Track​
  • Environmental Enterprise Track

View the 2022 Program brochure | Meet the 2022 winners

 

Program Overview

Program dates: January 25 - March 30, 2022

Duration: 10 weeks

 

1. Bootcamp Experience

Program Dates: January 25 – March 22, 2022 ​

Duration: Tuesdays from 6-8 PM for 8 weeks ​(Break from February 28th to March 5th)​​

  • Weekly workshops: Delivered by seasoned entrepreneurs and business experts, these sessions aim to introduce strategic frameworks and concepts that guide the process of shaping and developing startup ideas.
  • Clinics: Available by appointment, the clinics are hands-on, one-on-one meetings to support startups on specific areas of their business plan.
  • Banking Information: Offered by the National Bank, this session provides an opportunity to explore the specifics of banking for startups.

*Note that 100% of the workshops are available to all teams, independently of their outcome at the Dobson Cup Competition.

2. Cup Competition Experience

Dobson Cup: The competition comprises two rounds, the semi-finals (up to 30 teams per track) and the finals (up to 8 teams per track), followed by the Awards Ceremony. The winning teams will compete for over $200,000 in prize money. 

Streams: the prizes will be awarded across four tracks:

  • Health Sciences Enterprise Track​
  • Technology Driven Enterprise Track​
  • Social Impact Enterprise Track​
  • Environmental Enterprise Track 

Bootcamp

Week Learning Themes
1

Introduction

  • Welcome
  • Keynote Speaker Program Introduction
2

Creating and delivering an effective pitch presentation

  • What to include in your pitch
  • Pitch structure
  • Tips for creating a cohesive and clear presentation
3

Storytelling and Audience Engagement

  • Enhancing your pitch and capturing the audience’s attention with an engaging narrative
4

National Bank info session

5

Market Research

  • Performing your competitive analysis
  • Best practices and useful resources for your market research
6

Market Positioning for Startups

  • Crafting a marketing strategy that aligns with your value proposition and brand promise
7

Finance for Startups: KPIs and Revenue Models

  • Identifying your Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) Developing a sound revenue model
8

Legal – Business Structures

  • Defining the business structure that suits your startup Understanding how to incorporate

 

Cup Competition

Program Dates:

  • February 10 & 11, 2022 -  Semi-Finals
  • March 28-29, 2022 - Finals
  • March 30, 2022 - Award Ceremony

The competition is made of two rounds, the semi-finals (up to 30 teams per track) and the finals (up to 8 teams per track), followed by the Awards Ceremony. Participating startups will deliver a 5-minute pitch followed by a 10-minute Q&A to an external panel of judges.

Tracks: The competition will take place across four tracks:

Health Sciences Enterprise Track (HSE)

Open to startups developing innovative solutions in the health sciences fields of biology, chemistry, physics, medicine, dentistry and engineering as well as a variety of multidisciplinary fields that are working to improve health, quality of life, patient centered healthcare, prevent and cure diseases, and understand how humans and animals function.

Technology Driven Enterprise Track (TDE)

Open to startups developing global solutions upon a new technology in the fields of computer science, robotics, mechanical engineering, manufacturing, construction, communications, education, business, financial and information technology as well as a variety of multidisciplinary fields that are working to significantly or radically disrupt their industry sector.

Social Impact Enterprise Track (SIE)

Open to non-profit or for-profit startups that apply commercial strategies to maximize improvements in human and social well-being, such as trading cooperatives, credit unions, community organizations, NGOs or other multidisciplinary fields that are working to achieve social, cultural and/or community economic outcomes as their mission.

Environmental Enterprise Track (EE)

Open to startups developing innovative solutions to address one or several major global environmental challenges in the fields of nature conservation, agricultural science, renewable energy, transportation, waste management, food production, consumer goods, retail and packaging or other multidisciplinary fields that are working to reduce negative impact or increase positive effects on the environment.

Awards

Prizes to be Won

The McGill Dobson Cup Competition Powered by National Bank is an experiential learning opportunity that offers a once in a lifetime networking experience with world-class entrepreneurs and mentors. More than just a pitch session, finalists across all tracks are competing for just over $200,000 in funding.

Powered by National Bank, $160,000 in prizes distributed across all four tracks:

  • 1st Place - Four (4) prizes of $20,000
  • 2nd Place -Four (4) prizes of $12,000
  • 3rd Place - Four (4) prizes of $8,000

Mastercard Foundation-Dobson Startup Award

Established under the Mastercard Foundation Scholars Program at McGill University the MCF-Dobson Startup Awards supports ventures competing in the McGill Dobson Cup Competition. The awards will be offered to viable, sustainable, and scalable ventures and community projects that create economic opportunities for others. Valued at a total of $17,000, this award will be given to two deserving teams competing in this year’s startup competition, who demonstrate innovative ideas in the areas of entrepreneurship. The award will be divided as follows:

  • 1st Place MCF-Dobson - $10,000
  • 2nd Place MCF-Dobson - $7,000

Amount: $17,000


Murdoch Family Initiative Award

Established by Neil Murdoch (BCom‘81) and Gisele Murdoch to help support undergraduate students in the Desautels Faculty of Management to take the initiative to gain practical experience during their studies and to encourage students to be creative and entrepreneurial. The award will be for a student, in good academic standing, who has demonstrated entrepreneurial talent and initiative and is involved in an entrepreneurial venture. Students apply through the McGill Dobson Centre for Entrepreneurship. Preference for the award will be given to students entering U2 or U3. Students will apply for the award by submitting business plans to the McGill Dobson Centre for Entrepreneurship. The award will be given to the student whose plan is judged worthy of support as determined by the Director of the McGill Dobson Centre for Entrepreneurship. It is understood that the process and method for selection is currently the McGill Dobson Cup Competition, which already has a committee of independent judges.

Amount: $5,000


The Steven Pal Family Award

Established in 2020 by Steven Pal, BSc 1979, MBA 1981, to encourage students enrolled in the Desautels Faculty of Management’s Dobson Cup Competition to be creative and entrepreneurial. The Award will be for an undergraduate or graduate student who has demonstrated entrepreneurial talent and initiative, and is involved in an entrepreneurial venture. Students apply through the Dobson Centre for Entrepreneurship.

Amount: $5,000


The McGill Engine Prize

Established in 2017 in the Faculty of Engineering, the McGill Engine Prize, funded by our generous donors, the late Jim Brodeur, and his wife Barbara Brodeur, is offered by the McGill Engine Centre to support a technologically based venture competing in the final round of the McGill Dobson Cup competition. To be eligible for the McGill Engine Prize in the McGill Dobson Cup, at least one team member must be a current full-time student or professor at McGill’s Faculty of Engineering.

Amount: $2,500


Avmor Prize for Social Responsibility

Established in 2003 through the generosity of Mr. Avrum Morrow for an outstanding undergraduate student, or group of students, who focus(es) their efforts on social responsibility. Awarded to (a) winning team(s), composed of students, of the McGill Dobson Cup Start-UP Competition or similar McGill Dobson Centre for Entrepreneurship initiatives. Awarded by the McGill Dobson Centre for Entrepreneurship at the Desautels Faculty of Management at McGill University.

Amount: $1,900

Program Applications

Ideal Participant Profile

The McGill Dobson Bootcamp & Cup competition is a comprehensive program for McGill-affiliated early-stage startups that have been working on a prototype or/and have a functional business who are looking to develop their business plan and move towards launching their startup.

  • Your team has at least one member that is affiliated with McGill (e.g., student, faculty, staff or alumni).
  • Your team has at least one technical co-founder, and can build your business upon a technology, science, or idea that is significantly or radically disruptive.
  • All team compositions: unidisciplinary, multi-disciplinary and inter-professional teams are welcomed and encouraged, as are teams that include learners or graduates.

How to Apply

Read the online guidelines to confirm eligibility and understand the major steps.​

  1. Choose which of the four tracks of the Dobson Cup competition you want to enter. Track definitions are available in the guidelines.
  2. Write your five-page startup plan using the fillable Microsoft Word template and convert it into a pdf document. Plans that do not use the template will not be accepted.
  3. Make a short video of your team presenting the project (1’30” maximum) – unlisted on YouTube or Vimeo.
  4. Fill-in the online application form, attach your pdf startup plan and add the link to your video.

A commitment towards attending all the Bootcamp workshops and executing the project work is required. Following completion of the McGill Dobson Bootcamp and Cup Program, participants are encouraged to apply to the 2022 McGill Dobson X-1 Accelerator.​

Applications are now closed.

Be notified when the program applications open.

Have questions about the program? Contact us for more information: dobson.mgmt [at] mcgill.ca.

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