Ryerson launches DMZ in Toronto

Toronto has a new tech incubator. Ryerson University’s Digital Media Zone to be casually referred to as the DMZ held an event signifying it’s opening for business (development).  

Ryerson President Sheldon Levy, is doing his part to steer his schoodmzl, and in-turn Toronto, towards becoming a Canadian version of Silicon Valley. At the launch event he claimed the only thing keeping the city from becoming a true hub of technological innovation and business was desire.

Students and young people are major contributors to the innovation agenda, and their ideas and energy are incredible. At a university, pure research is essential, but so is encouraging and showcasing emerging talent and connecting students and young alumni to private and public sector industry. Our goal is to keep talent and industry in Canada, rather than training our young people to work in Silicon Valley. The DMZ will be a driver in creating a digital industry hub right here in downtown Toronto.

The Digital Media Zone is summed up by it’s director, Valerie Fox as “a place where young people can have the opportunity to collaborate with other innovators, mentors and industry and gain the confidence and expertise they need to launch their own businesses.”

The DMZ houses numerous experimental interactive technologies, students from disciplines ranging from computer science to business to fine art, a bean-bag chair lounge and the entrepreneurial mindset. It’s fitting that the DMZ is situated one floor below Google Canada and just above Toronto’s newest multiplex theater.

“We were able to turn this new business around so quickly in part because of the physical space offered by Ryerson’s Digital Media Zone and its technology,” said Chris, “but also because in that space we were connected to like-minded individuals and infused with industry knowledge.”

Ryerson Alumni Chris Nguyen took opportunity at the DMZ launch to officially launch his own enterprise. TeamSave.com was officially the first start-up to born out of the DMZ. Chris acknowledged that he was able to quickly turn around his project so quickly in part because of the physical space offered by the DMZ, furthermore he explained that the DMZ has plenty of like minded individuals infused with plenty of industry knowledge.

Chris finished his speech by explaining the one thing a true entrepreneur needed to have, and that’s PIE: Passion, Inspiration and Execution.

Thanks to Techvibes reader Jonathan Laba for helping out with reporting on this event.