Press Release

The third annual Riipen Cross-College Entrepreneurial Challenge showcased exceptional Ontario student talent.

Riipen, in partnership with RBC, successfully concluded the third edition of the Cross-College Entrepreneurial Challenge.
May 13, 2024


Vancouver, BC – May 13, 2024 – Riipen, in partnership with RBC, successfully concluded the third edition of the Cross-College Entrepreneurial Challenge. This dynamic virtual case competition brought together student teams from various esteemed Ontario colleges. The competition, held entirely online and facilitated by the Riipen platform, attracted participation from Algonquin College, Centennial College, Conestoga College, Durham College, Fleming College, George Brown College, Humber College, Loyalist College, and St. Lawrence College

From April 19 to 26, 2024, these young entrepreneurs, working in teams, demonstrated remarkable collaboration, innovation, and problem-solving skills to tackle real-life business challenges presented by participating companies CTS Incentives, Will2Well, and Students were tasked with rejuvenating a brand voice, conducting a market analysis, and developing a referral program. 

"Shout out to the host, all the colleagues, and the college students who all participated and gave such amazing presentations. Thank you for this opportunity and for allowing us all to experience exploration in strategic group marketing engagements," shared Mike Defazio, a student at Centennial College and member of the team that won honors for the most engaging submission.

Demonstrating exceptional collaboration, innovation, and problem-solving skills, the student teams dedicated themselves to crafting actionable solutions throughout the week-long competition. Their efforts culminated in standout performances, recognizing their ingenuity and dedication and showcasing the ingenuity and talent fostered within Ontario's student community.

Winning teams:


  • Judge Winner: Conestoga Team 1
  • Most Engaging: Centennial Team 1
  • Most Risk-taking: Conestoga Team 1


  • Judge Winner: Algonquin Team 1
  • Most Engaging: Humber Team 2
  • Most Risk-taking: Algonquin Team 1

CTS Incentives

  • Judge Winner: Conestoga Team 2
  • Most Engaging: Algonquin Team 2
  • Most Risk-taking: Humber Team 3

Most engaging submission overall: Centennial Team 1

Susan Kates, Professor and Program Coordinator of the Entrepreneurial Enterprise Business Management Post-Grad Program at Humber College, commended the participants: "Congratulations to all the winning teams. The quality of your solutions was amazing, showcasing your abilities as entrepreneurial thinkers that can tackle a challenge."

Zahra Zahed, CEO of Will2Well, expressed gratitude for the event: "This was an incredible journey engaging with enthusiastic students solving real-world problems throughout the challenge. I want to express my deepest gratitude to Riipen for organizing this challenge and to RBC for sponsoring such a transformative event. It was not just an opportunity to mentor the next generation of leaders but also to grow as a company."

The Honourable Nina Tangri, Associate Minister of Small Business, shared an inspiring video message during the closing ceremony, emphasizing the importance for schools to incorporate work-integrated learning to help teach an entrepreneurial mindset and foster economic growth and innovation.

"Riipen is committed to helping our partners provide innovative work-integrated learning experiences. Congratulations to all the student teams for their hard work and dedication throughout the competition. Your passion and ingenuity serve as a testament to the bright future of entrepreneurship in Ontario," said Michael Weber, Riipen’s Academic Account Executive.

We extend our heartfelt gratitude to our sponsor, RBC, whose support made this event possible, as well as the judges and participating businesses for their invaluable contributions.

For more information about Riipen, visit

About Riipen:

Riipen is the world’s leading online work-based learning platform and ecosystem, aiming to end underemployment and close the skills gap. Riipen partners with governments, colleges, universities, and educators to provide inclusive access to high-quality, high-impact work-integrated learning that provides learners with experience and industry connections, as well as career clarity to find meaningful careers. Riipen has successfully and proudly implemented 13.3 million hours of learning hours for over 217,000 learners with more than 35,000 employers and 640+ academic partnerships, portals, and training providers in 9 countries, in both English and French.

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