- Written by Sean Flinn, Web Communications Specialist, University Guelph-Humber
Amy Trachter turned two passions into a business.
“I love to cook and I’m a big planner,” she explained.
A.R.T Creations offers organic catering and event planning services, mainly in North York and Richmond Hill but eventually to expand across the GTA.
Trachter launched the business this past year, her last at University of Guelph-Humber. (She graduates from Media Studies in June.)
Her first client was the Humber Students’ Federation. She’s now contracted to cater all HSF board meetings on North Campus.
Since completing classes in April, Trachter has been booking new clients and “building relationships, researching and marketing.”
She’s doing this with the help of Basim Mirza and his business incubator, Buzz Ventures Corp.
This year Mirza approached the University of Guelph-Humber, among other post-secondary institutions in the GTA, to identify and support student-entrepreneurs. He now has six Guelph-Humber projects in his incubator.
“They don’t want to work in part-time jobs. They want to start their own business and work for themselves,” said Mirza.
He represents a group of angel investors, those who usually fund a business after family and friends and before it receives larger venture capital investment.
His involvement in A.R.T. Creations began in a classroom, where Trachter was presenting an initial business plan for her organic catering concept. It was part of Planning a Small Business, a fourth-year Business course.
Right away, Mirza saw the student’s passion and commitment.
“You’ve got to be willing to put in the effort,” said Mirza.
They’ve signed a deal whereby Mirza provides services to Trachter, such as networking, website development and refining the business plan and strategy, for a portion of the equity in A.R.T. Creations.
Mirza also visited a Media Studies class, Client Relations and Project Management, and listened to students pitch business ideas.
“[The students] liked the real-world feel of it,” said Jerry Chomyn, Program Head, Media Studies.
Chomyn also noted the “collaborative” nature of the project. Students worked on the proposals in groups of three and four.
Offering students the opportunity to pursue investment in their ideas makes sense for the University of Guelph-Humber, according to Dr. George Bragues, Assistant Vice-Provost and Program Head, Business.
“It fits with our mission of delivering practice and theory in our programs,” he said.
Starting A.R.T. Creations has made sense, personally and professionally, for Amy Trachter. “I love the idea of building a business with my vision and values,” she said.
Visit A.R.T. Creations online.