You could be eligible for Summer Company if you:

  • currently reside in Ontario, enrolled in full-time studies at a high school, college or university level
  • are a Canadian citizen or permanent resident
  • are between 15-29 years old (approved participants under 18 must have a parent co-sign the contract)
  • are not already running a business (running less than a year)
  • are not working at another job or going to school for more than 12 hours a week during the program
  • are returning to school after the program ends
  • you cannot apply again if you have received a Summer Company grant in the past.

If you are on social assistance (Ontario Works or Ontario Disability Support Program) you can still apply to Summer Company. Payments from the program may be exempt as income and assets under social assistance, so your monthly social assistance payment may not be affected.

What kind of business:

You can choose to start almost any type of business, as long as it:

  • is a sole proprietorship or corporation (where you are the majority shareholder)
  • is an independent business venture (not a part of an existing or family business)
  • qualifies as “self-employed” for income tax purposes
  • operates in Ontario on a full-time basis
  • follows government rules for operating a business
  • *Considerations will be given to businesses that are COVID-19 appropriate.

Grant Amount

Maximum grant: $3,000

  • up to $1,500 upfront to help with start-up costs
  • up to $1,500 when you successfully complete the program requirements

Dates and Hours

Application deadline: May 15th, 2023 (or earlier if spots are filled)

Application approvals: May 31st, 2023 (or earlier if spots are filled quickly)

Start date: June 1st, 2023 for post-secondary students, or day after last exam for high school students (Business activities may start before June 1st, 2023)

End date: Labour Day (but you can choose to keep running your summer business while in school)

*Early applications are encouraged as spots are limited and the program applications could close before the stated deadline.

You must be prepared to commit:

  • an average of 35 hours per week
  • a minimum of 12 weeks in a row for post-secondary students (total 420 hours)
  • a minimum of 8 weeks in a row for high school students (total 280 hours)

How to apply

  1. Check the criteria above and take the eligibility checklist here to see if you are eligible and APPLY for the program
  2. For detailed instructions on how to apply to the Summer Company program, check out the link here.

To prepare your application:

Contact the Waterloo Region local program provider, Rob Clement at 519-741-2604 or