A Canada-wide incubation program helping youth develop, market and accelerate their business idea.

Stop ideating. Start validating.

DMZ Basecamp is Canada's first intensive student incubation program that helps young entrepreneurs create tech solutions to growing social or economic gaps in society over the course of four weeks in the summer. In this award-winning bootcamp students learn how to develop and market their business ideas with help from industry mentors.

The goal? To leave with a validated and refined business model tailored for long term success.

Program overview

During the program, aspiring entrepreneurs bring their innovative ideas to life by learning about artificial intelligence and blockchain technology. They are taught coding, 3D printing for prototyping and development, sales and finance, pitching, leadership training, public speaking and more. By the end of the program, five companies from each cohort are selected to compete for three prizes of $5,000.

Basecamp is free to enroll. Applicants can apply with either a business idea or with an existing business in the early prototyping stage. Additionally, three team members can also be registered.


startups created


in funding raised


student applications received


students accepted


features in major media outlets

Why get involved

Kickstart a business

With over 30 workshops, access to a diverse network of 30 mentors, 1:1 coaching and a chance to win a $5,000 cash prize, participants have the opportunity to turn their ideas into a reality.

Customized coaching

Participants can leverage our wide network to access personal mentors and pitch coaches to perfect their presentation skills.

Startup ecosystem

Students gain an understanding of the ins and outs of how successful organizations operate and the requirements needed to scale a business idea. Participants also have the opportunity to tour innovative offices such as Facebook.

Disruptive technology

In close quarters with startup founders and industry professionals, students will learn the fundamentals of coding and disruptive technology such as artificial intelligence.


Program applicants should:

  • Be a current student, returning to school in the upcoming Fall semester or must be a recent graduate within the last 8 months.
  • Commit 15 – 25 hours per week and attend all program workshops.
  • Apply with an innovative and creative tech-based idea within any industry sector.

Program dates

University cohort:
June 4 - July 11
Monday - Friday 10:00 a.m. - 3:00 p.m.
High-school cohort:
July 22 - August 22
Monday - Friday 10:00 a.m. - 3:00 p.m

Ready to validate your business?

Applications for the High School cohort have been extended to June 9th at 11:59pm.


Our success stories

CEO of SmartCane, Riya Karumanchi is a 15 year-old entrepreneur who is extremely passionate about harnessing technology to better people's’ lives. She is an avid machine learning developer, a DMZ Fellow and an Innovator at The Knowledge Society, and is recognized as one of the Top 20 Teen Entrepreneurs Worldwide.

SmartCane is an enhanced version of the common white cane typically used by visually impaired people, that was never updated to take advantage of new technologies. The device leverages technology to increase independence and safety through GPS integration, object detection, location sharing, an emergency button and light and wetness sensors. Riya has gained over $70,000 in funding and assistance from some of the world’s top companies such as Microsoft and Google.
EmPowerEQ is a social enterprise developing solutions to improve energy access in developing rural areas. The company was founded by Hussein when he was in high school and has since worked with many organizations to grow the business, including World Vision.

EmPowerEQ tackles the state of energy poverty in rural Malawi, Africa through the integration of a patented electric generator into everyday activities, such as water collection. They empower communities with clean energy and increased economic prosperity with the goal to change the lives of over 15 million Malawians. Their product harnesses energy from rotating motions such as water collection devices, bicycles and wheelbarrows and stores the energy in a capacitor that can power household electronics such as radios, fashlights and cell phones.
Glycosa is a biotechnology company developing a non-invasive smart insulin patch for young, active diabetics. The smart patch is externally connected to a patient’s continuous glucose monitor (CGM) via bluetooth, which allows it to release insulin accordingly using microneedling technology.

The insulin store for the patch, which feeds insulin to the microneedles, can be periodically reflled as to accommodate a user’s individual insulin intake needs. This design along with the adhesive of the SmartPatch allow a user to engage in physical activity without the concern of a bulky, invasive insulin pump that could potentially lead to injury.

Past notable speakers

Bobby Hennessey

Client Solutions Manager, Facebook

Daniel Asper

Senior Manager, Business Development, Shopify

Edward T. Fan

Partner, Torys LLP

Inmar Givoni

Senior Autonomy Engineering Manager, Uber

Jyll Saskin Gales

International Growth Consultant, Google

Stephen Dixon

Telco Lead, Amazon

2018 in review

28 startups. 51 students. 6 weeks. Get a rundown of Basecamp 2018.
Have a question?