SUDBURY, ON - Cambrian College will celebrate a partnership that combines student creativity and local businesses in a special one-night exhibit on March 12 at Cambrian College’s Open Studio.
The Voucher for e-Business (VEB) project, currently in its second year, connects third-year graphic design students with locally-owned businesses who would like to optimize their online presence. The students work closely with the business owners and representatives to develop a website that meets that client’s needs. Projects were completed in December and participating students received a course credit, as well as a stipend. The Ontario Centres of Excellence (OCE) supported each project with a $2,500 grant.
The project is spearheaded by Cambrian Innovates, the applied research department at Cambrian College and Sean Grant, a graphic design professor.
“The VEB program gives students an opportunity to get paid working experience in their field,” said Grant. “This gives them a big advantage when it’s time to enter the working world.”
Emile Malvaso, Manager of Cambrian Innovates, hopes this event helps to shed light on partnerships like VEB and voucher programs in general, which are still relatively new.
“We’d like to educate local organizations about these opportunities,” said Malvaso. “The more participation we have from locally-owned businesses, the more opportunities we will have for our students and the more our local economy can grow.”
Guylaine Jalbert-Thompson, the owner of Quinta Essentia Wellness Studio and Bistro, was recruited through the City of Greater Sudbury Regional Business Centre. She initially participated to give a student some working experience, but found a lot of mutual benefits.
“Working with Jessica (Lambe) was inspiring due to her enthusiasm and fresh ideas,” said Jalbert-Thompson. “We’ve had a lot of compliments on our new website. Our clients find it more user-friendly, and we have gained more business and new clients because of it.”
Student Matthew Urso paired with Sizzle Mongolian Grill for his VEB project. He got involved after hearing about the opportunities the program provides.
“I did hear a lot of positive comments (from fellow students and alumni) which made me investigate the VEB program more seriously,” said Urso. “Getting paid for the work, and the long hours it took, were the most rewarding parts of this project.”
Five students took part in the project, working with Little Sprouts Community Gardens, Appraisals North, Quinta Essentia, Rebecca Bose Photography and Sizzle Mongolian Grill. All the projects will be on display during the showcase.
The website exhibition takes place Thursday, March 12 at Cambrian College’s Open Studio, 93 Cedar St., from 7 to 9 p.m. Catering is provided by The Motley Kitchen. Opening remarks take place at 7:30 p.m.
WHEN: March 12, 7 to 9 p.m.
WHERE: The Open Studio, 93 Cedar St.
Nadine Olivier, Marketing Coordinator
(705) 566-8101, ext. 6831
Sean Grant, Professor
Graphic Design Program
(705) 566-8101, ext. 7862