Schulich Partnership with City of Toronto wins EDCO Award of Excellence
The Economic Developers Council of Ontario (EDCO) Award of Excellence is a well-established program that recognizes outstanding economic initiatives and individuals in the Province of Ontario. Recently the City of Toronto and Digital Main Street were awarded the EDCO ‘Innovation in Community Resiliency (Urban)’ for their ‘ShopHERE’ program at the 64th annual Evolve ON Conference & Showcase.
Last year, Schulich partnered with the City of Toronto to help main street businesses survive the COVID-19 crisis. As part of the partnership, 100 students from Schulich’s MBA, Masters’, and undergraduate programs gained paid summer placements and were assigned to help Toronto’s local retailers and artists move their businesses online.
“The role of Schulich’s students in the Digital Main Street ShopHERE initiative was one of the great Schulich success stories during a challenging and unforgettable year,” said Detlev Zwick, Interim Dean. “We are proud of what they accomplished. By using their skills and expertise, our students were able to help small local businesses move their business online and stay afloat during the pandemic lockdowns.”
A panel of professionals from the fields of economic development, marketing, advertising, and tourism judge the entries by using a scorecard to evaluate:
- the objective of the initiative and its success;
- target audience being assisted;
- initiative’s estimated ROI; and
- initiative becoming a model of best practice for the industry.
Funding for ‘ShopHERE’ was provided by the City of Toronto and Magnet, a social innovation platform with a mission to accelerate inclusive economic growth in Canada. The placement program was supported by a number of community and corporate partners, including the Toronto Association of Business Improvement Areas, Shopify, Google, Mastercard, Microsoft, Facebook, eBay, Ritual, Trufan, eShipper, and Snapchat.
Congratulations to everyone involved with this project – which was led by the Office of Innovation and Entrepreneurship. Schulich is proud to be a part of an amazing initiative that continues to help Toronto small businesses during the pandemic.