Spring Sprint @Ara

Ara Institute of Canterbury and Ministry of Awesome are looking for New Zealand’s next startup super star and ... it might just be you!

The Spring Sprint is an awesome opportunity to kickstart your business idea and turn it into a viable startup.

What's the Spring Sprint all about?

The Spring Sprint is a 2-week intensive programme built entirely for Ara students who have an idea they'd like to explore and develop into a potential brand new business.  We'd love it if you came along as a team so - get together with a friend - think up a great idea you'd like to develop and get with the programme.  

Spring Sprint is not like going to class. We work with some of the most exciting startups in New Zealand and this is your chance to join your new tribe.  You can expect a totally hands-on and totally interactive startup growth programme where you will be surrounded by the best and brightest minds from the startup and innovation ecosystem in Christchurch and beyond. 

Selected teams will :

  1. Get trained by industry experts on essential business skills
  2. Receive focused mentoring from NZ's most promising young entrepreneurs
  3. Gain profile and visibility across the city and beyond
  4. Get opportunities to connect with industry and city leaders as well as with potential investors

When and Where?

The programme runs from Monday, 30 Sep for 2 weeks.  We will expect you to give this programme 100% of your attention and effort.  Students will have to spend only 5 hours per week in workshops and mentoring sessions.  The programme runs from the Te Ōhaka Centre for Growth & Innovation which is located in KBlock on Ara's central city Christchurch campus.  

In this 2-week programme you will:  

1.  Discover your market

Participants will learn how to identify the market need, quantify it and discover potential customer groups.

2.  Develop the value proposition

Once an opportunity has been identified participants will learn how to develop a product or service which offers a strong value proposition to the customers. Through the training sessions and mentoring participants will learn how to test and optimise your value proposition.

3.  Ensure sustainability

The programme will give participants the opportunity to get expert guidance around building a robust and sustainable business model for their enterprise. 

4.  Build pathways to market

Participants will get the opportunity to get focused support while working towards discovering your product's ideal path to market as well as developing an early marketing strategy.

5.  Develop your venture’s storytelling and pitch

Learn how to communicate about your venture to stakeholders, investors, employees, and even your personal network so that everyone you talk to wants to come along for the ride.

Deadlines and Dates 

Applications open:  20 Aug 2019

Applications close:  25 Sep 2019

Spring Sprint kickoff:  30 Sep 2019

 The Final Pitch - 17 Oct 2019



Can Ara alumnis apply ?

No, only enrolled students at the Ara Institute of Canterbury can apply.

Can I apply alone ?

Students can apply individually or in teams but most successful startups have great teams behind them.

Should I pay to be part of the programme ?

No, the Spring Sprint is a fully funded programme run for Ara students.  

Can I apply if I haven’t build a business plan ?

Yes, we are looking for innovative ideas and students with capability to execute them. You will received training and mentoring to build robust business model for your idea.

Do I need to be a tech entrepreneur to apply?

Good ideas come from anywhere and anyone! We totally encourage application from all sectors; from hoverboards to vegan superfood bars, if you think your idea is a good one, just apply!

Can I work during the programme ?

Sprint is a full time (9am-530pm) week-long programme and students are expected to be working on developing their ideas all day and very likely into the night. Having said that, we can get you flexibility if you absolutely need it.  Talk to us and we'll see what we can do.

Can I apply as a team?

We love teams and it's proven that startup teams are more successful than individuals.  So...yes - feel free to apply individually or as a team.  


How to apply


Applications for the Spring Sprint @Ara open on 20 Aug 2018.  We will shortlist on 20 of Sep and interview on 23 Sep.  The programme takes place from Monday, 30 Sep - Friday, 11 Oct.

If you are interested in taking part in the Spring Sprint Programme @Ara, fill out your details below and we will email you the application form.  The deadline for applications is 20 Sep 2019.  Feel free to contact us with any questions on jacob@ministryofawesome.com