Skip to Main Content
Join our Black Innovation Summit

Summer 2024


A free hybrid summer entrepreneurship program helping students grow their business.

Pitch to win a trip to NYC and $50,000 in grant prizes, including a $20,000 first-place prize!

Basecamp is DMZ's startup incubation program designed to catapult ambitious students into the tech world. Over the years, Basecamp has supported 365 students and created 151 new startups that use technology to solve compelling industry problems.

This year introduces Basecamp Sprint, a high-velocity 4-week program for university students to pitch at Collision 2024 for the chance to win a trip to New York City. It's followed by Basecamp Voyage, an 8-week deep dive program for high school and university students, emphasizing ideation, development, and a culminating pitch competition for $50,000 in grants.

What's in it for you?

Basecamp Sprint: The details

  • Intensive 4-week program: Tailored for university students (undergraduate or graduate level) eager to accelerate their business ideas
  • Personal and professional growth: Benefit from a curated selection of development opportunities aimed at expanding your entrepreneurial mindset
  • TMU housing grant: Receive up to $800 in housing grants for a comfortable stay at a TMU dorm during your Basecamp Sprint experience
  • Real-world simulations: Engage in live simulations and hands-on workshops that mirror real-world business challenges, enhancing your problem-solving and decision-making skills
  • Pitch at Collision 2024: Pitch your idea at Collision 2024 in June, North America’s largest tech conference
  • NYC travel opportunity: Win an all-expenses-paid trip to New York City, offering visits to the DMZ NYC office and participation in premier tech events
  • Continuation to Voyage: Commitment is required for the subsequent Basecamp Voyage, ensuring a seamless journey of growth and learning


  • Week 1: Entrepreneurship and Goal Setting
  • Week 2: Experiential Learning
  • Week 3: Pitching
  • Week 4: Collision Week


Students interested in the program must:

  • Have at least one team member commit to the program in person 3 days a week
  • Be able to participate in both Basecamp Sprint and the subsequent Voyage program
  • Be returning to school in the fall or have graduated from a university undergraduate or graduate program within 8 months of the program start date
  • Have an innovative business idea that utilizes technology to solve a compelling industry problem and are ready to grow the idea
  • Be driven and coachable


  • Application deadline: May 3
  • Interviews: April 10 - May 10
  • Final Decision: May 15
  • Onboarding meeting: May 21
  • Program start: May 27

Basecamp Voyage: The details

  • 8-week entrepreneurial journey: A comprehensive program for both high school and university students, designed to deepen your entrepreneurial knowledge and skills
  • Expert 1:1 mentoring: Gain invaluable insights through personalized mentoring sessions with DMZ staff, alumni companies, EIRs, partners, and external mentors
  • Entrepreneurial connections: Integrate with TMU’s ten entrepreneurial zones for an immersive learning experience
  • Customized expert coaching: Receive tailored coaching from DMZ experts in marketing, product development, lean canvas business models, consultations, and financing
  • Ecosystem engagement: Explore opportunities to interact with leading startups and experts within Canada and DMZ’s global network
  • Exploratory outings: Participate in outings to various regional ecosystems, broadening your understanding of the entrepreneurial landscape
  • Pitch Competition on Graduation Day: Compete in a culminating pitch competition for a chance to win one of four grant prizes, with a whopping first-place prize of $20,000!


Program Validation & Prototyping

  • Week 1: Entrepreneurship 101 & Goal Setting
  • Week 2: Design Thinking & Customer Discovery
  • Week 3: Mock Ups & Prototyping

Go To Market

  • Week 4: Messaging & Marketing
  • Week 5: Financing & Legal
  • Week 6: Product Launch & Sales

Pitching & Storytelling

  • Week 7: Pitching
  • Week 8: Basecamp Finals!

Students interested in the program must:

  • Have at least one team member commit to the program in person 3 days a week
  • Be returning to school in the fall or have graduated high school or postsecondary within 8 months of the program start date
  • Have an innovative business idea that utilizes technology to solve a compelling industry problem
  • Be driven and coachable

Don't have an idea or team, but still interested in Basecamp?
Please specify in your application that you are applying without a business idea or a team. We’ll set you up with a team of other like-minded students, and put you on a path to ideate and build the next greatest tech idea!


  • Application deadline: May 10
  • Interviews: April 10 - May 17
  • Final Decision: May 22
  • Onboarding meeting: June 14
  • Program start: July 4


Success stories


A Friendlier Company is creating a smart, centralized reuse system to eliminate single-use food packaging waste. The company gives food service providers reusable takeout containers, and once used, A Friendlier Company handles all reverse logistics, washing, and redistribution for reuse. The containers are lightweight, stackable, and are competitively priced to disposable plastic containers. This zero-waste system generates up to 60% less greenhouse gas emissions than single-use alternatives. Since launching, A Friendlier Company has been featured on CTV News, Global News, and the CBC.


Anaxa specializes in the inconceivable. Even in a world of an ever-growing list of connected devices, there is so much room for growth. Our goal is to implement bleeding edge, quantum based hardware across different industries to solve their biggest problems. Anaxa will start protocol testing this year and is on track to developing its hardware in 2023.


MedaKi’s focus is on increasing accessibility to health care products and providers, specifically pharmaceuticals. We are headed towards a future where all pharmacy services and products will be delivered through an application on your mobile device or desktop. With MedaKi’s solution, we will allow users to directly connect with their local pharmacy! Medaki was accepted into Toronto Metropolitan University's Science Discovery Zone and Toronto Metropolitan University's Biomedical Zone. MedaKi also won the top prize at the Toronto Metropolitan University Venture Zone Industry Challenge.

Supporting partners

Embark Major Grant Program

Supporting innovative programs, services and initiatives that have a positive impact on student experiences in Canada.

Agnes Hilkene

Executive Director, The George and Helen Vari Foundation

Past notable speakers

Amir Jaffari

Growth Lead, Shopify

Bobby Hennessey

Client Solutions Manager, Facebook

Daniel Asper

Senior Manager, Business Development, Shopify

Derek Hopfner

Co-Founder, Founded

Edward T. Fan

Partner, Torys LLP

Henry Shi

Co-Founder & CTO, Snaptravel

Inmar Givoni

Senior Autonomy Engineering Manager, Uber

Jyll Saskin Gales

International Growth Consultant, Google

Maria Attarian

Customer Solutions Engineer, Google

Mark Schnabel

Partner Manager, Pinterest

Morgan McCunn

Product Manager, Shopify

Ozge Yeloglu

Chief Data Scientist, Microsoft

Sheldon Levy

Special Advisor to the Minister of Small Business and Export, Government of Canada

Stephen Dixon

Telco Lead, Amazon

Tyler Lindell

AI/VR Lead, Tesla

Wesley Tarle

Software Engineer, Google

For more infomation, please contact

Jamelia Allen

Talent Development Program Coordinator

Adeana Ching-A-Sue

Events & Programming Assistant

Pouria Daliri

Talent Development Programs Specialist

Deyana Attia

Events & Programming Assistant

Rose Ghamari

Manager, Entrepreneur & Talent Development