Victoria Radburn’s career as an entrepreneur officially began at the age of nine, when she decided to start a cupcake business in her neighbourhood.
“I loved the idea of creating something out of nothing and being in charge of myself,” recalls the vibrant sixteen-year old student at Elmwood School, who is now working to help other young Canadians catch the business bug. “There are a lot of people my age who are interested in becoming entrepreneurs, and I want to show them that it’s an option as a career path.”
To that end, Victoria came up with a plan – a business plan, that is – and founded an organization called Startup Youth which helps young people learn how to start and run a business. The group is supported by StartUp Canada, an organization dedicated to unleashing the voice of Canadian entrepreneurs.
Victoria and her motivated team of fellow high-school student volunteers have set about creating programs that will inform, educate and inspire young people to build their business ideas into reality. Startup Youth offers both a summer internship program and a March Break bootcamp. September is also the launch of a new Entrepreneur-in-Training program where participants will learn a specific skill each month and be challenged to complete a related project for each new session.
While Victoria credits her parents for inspiring and supporting her entrepreneurial spirit, she wants to make sure that all kids with big ideas are encouraged to achieve their dreams. “Offering these programs at a young age is really helpful because it allows kids to have the skills to start a business now or in the future.”
Running Startup Youth takes up a tremendous amount of her time, but Victoria wouldn’t trade a minute of it. “All of the time and effort we’re putting into it right now will see young kids in the future embarking on new career paths. Entrepreneurialism is really powerful in the sense that you can come up with an idea, create that idea and then change the way that people think, act or go about their daily life,” she says with the added conviction, “I don’t really see myself doing anything else.”
For more information, please visit www.startupyouth.ca