Saint Mary’s venture capital students invest in haircut house calls


House calls for haircuts proved to be to be a cut above the competition and too good an investment to pass up for Saint Mary’s University’s Venture Grade Fund. They are investing $15,000 in Cribcut, an online booking service that connects consumers with top hair stylists that bring the salon to them.

“Cribcut has a novel business model that we are proud to support,” said Saint Mary’s student and Venture Grade Associate Emma Scott. “We are confident in David’s lean startup methodology and experience as a serial entrepreneur who’s exited three past ventures and one in Silicon Valley. Cribcut is positioned to be a major disruptor in the beauty industry.

Cribcut was co-founded by serial entrepreneur David Howe, who has built and deployed a software-enabled marketplace for hairstylists. Cribcut's solution helps stylists become travelling hairdressers - providing clients with haircuts, colors, and styles at their homes and offices. Cribcut's software solution helps stylists with bookings, travel optimization, payments and ratings. Cribcut also facilitates new client introductions for stylists. Bookings can be made through their online booking app with on-demand appointments available.

 "We're happy to welcome Venture Grade as one of our investors,” said David Howe, the Chief Executive Officer with Cribcut. “We're confident that this investment will help us continue growth and product development and set us up for further funding over the coming months. We look forward to a mutually beneficial partnership with Venture Grade and welcome them with open arms to our growing team."

Should the company experience a successful exit, meaning if they are purchased for a large sum, the investors, including Venture Grade, will receive a payout scaled to the purchase. Any returns made on Venture Grade’s investments are returned to Venture Grade, the student fund.

The Saint Mary’s University Venture Grade Fund is a student-raised and run venture capital fund and the first student-raised venture capital investment fund in Canada in which the students raise the capital.

The fund was started by students of Dr. Ellen Farrell at the Sobey School of Business in fall 2016, with a connection to Silicon Valley’s C100 group, Boston’s Canadian Entrepreneurs in New England, and initial support from Innovacorp. It has expanded to include members at other Atlantic universities including Acadia University, Dalhousie University, and Memorial University.

Saint Mary's observes the National Day of Remembrance and Action on Violence against Women

Close to 75 faculty, staff and students gathered to observe the National Day of Remembrance and Action on Violence against Women on Thursday, December 6 in the Art Gallery.

Presented by Saint Mary’s University and Peaceful Schools International, the solemn day marked the 29th anniversary of the shooting deaths of 14 female students at École Polytechnique in Montreal. Saint Mary’s has been holding the memorial annually since 1989, when the tragic shooting occurred.

In his remarks, President Robert Summerby-Murray reminded attendees that universities are to be both places of “sanctuary” and action to create a culture of respect for all, and that universities must lead in this action.

The service included a poem reading by Lindsay Vandewater, SMUSA Equity Officer as well as a moment of silence in honour of the fallen women.

Brianna Comeau and Kartik Saini of the SMU Women’s Centre presented the “Solidarity Canvas” hanging in the Art Gallery, a student-created, interactive installment that acknowledges violence suffered by women and other marginalized communities, and urged people to listen, believe, speak out, intervene and act to become allies.

Members of the SMUSA executive, the SMU football team and the Conflict Resolution Society gathered at the front of the room to quietly place 14 white roses in a vase as the names of the shooting victims were read aloud.

Danielle Day, 3rd year Engineering student at SMU, was awarded the Montreal Women’s Memorial Scholarship. Grade 8 students and creators of a trio of children’s books on peaceful conflict resolution were invited to the podium and attended and spoke of their hope and optimism that in the future, women would not longer have to face such violence.

Bridges to Thailand: Saint Mary’s signs MOU with Srinakharinwirot University

  The start of a partnership: Dr, Malcolm Butler, VPAR with Associate Professor Prit Supasetsiri, Vice President for International Relations and Communications, SWU and the visiting delagates in the McNally Boardroom.

The start of a partnership: Dr, Malcolm Butler, VPAR with Associate Professor Prit Supasetsiri, Vice President for International Relations and Communications, SWU and the visiting delagates in the McNally Boardroom.

The signing of a MoU between Saint Mary’s University and Srinakharinwirot University (SWU) in Thailand marks the beginning of a new partnership and opens the door to increased international mobility for both institutions.

A ten-person delegation from SWU came to campus on November 28 to visit Saint Mary’s, sign the MoU and discuss further opportunities for potential collaboration including joint degree programs, student exchanges and ESL summer/short-term courses.

In addition to Dr. Butler, delegates spoke with Dr. Adam Sarty, AVP Research, and Dean, FGSR; Dr. Harjeet Bhabra Dean, SSB; and Nicola MacNevin from the The Language Centre.

The Thai delegation included faculty from their College of Social Communication Innovation and Faculty of Economics who want to build ties with relevant Saint Mary’s programs at both undergraduate and graduate levels.

The Language Centre is also considering building a customized short-term program that focuses on English training, intercultural communication, or other specific subjects. SWU students could potentially start taking part in language training programs as early as next summer (2019).

Saint Mary’s was first introduced to SWU in June 2018 with the support of Nitchawan (Pan) Sriviboone, Trade Commissioner at the Canadian Embassy in Bangkok, Thailand, who identified the institutions as a good match for Saint Mary’s University in terms of partnerships.

Saint Mary’s hosts celebration of Halifax - Zhuhai partnership

Approximately 100 friends and guests gathered at the Patrick Power Library on Monday, December 3rd to celebrate the strong ties between the Halifax Regional Municipality and the city of Zhuhai, China.

Dr. Malcolm Butler, Deputy Mayor Tony Mancini and John Rogers, Interim President & CEO, Halifax Partnership each welcomed guests and the international delegates with the launch of a photo exhibit Charming Zhuhai, which is on display this month in the Library.

Halifax Mayor Mike Savage and Zhuhai Mayor Yao Yiesheng signed a partnership agreement during the Mayor’s most recent visit to China in June 2018. This agreement aligns with the province’s Nova Scotia – China Engagement Strategy and friendship agreement with Guangdong province, where Zhuhai is located. Zhuhai offers many complementary sectors to Halifax, including logistics, information technology, bio-pharmaceuticals, and tourism.

Saint Mary’s long-standing relationship with Beijing Normal University - Zhuhai was highlighted, as was its standing as one of Canada’s most internationals schools.

Saint Mary’s alumni appointed to Supreme Court positions in Nova Scotia


Congratulations are in order for two Saint Mary’s alumni who were both appointed as Supreme Court judges in Nova Scotia.

Darlene Jamieson, Q.C., managing partner of Merrick Jamieson Sterns Washington & Mahody, is appointed a judge of the Supreme Court of Nova Scotia in Halifax. She replaces Justice K. Coady, who elected to become a supernumerary judge effective November 5, 2018. Justice Jamieson graduated from Saint Mary's University with a B.A. (summa cum laude) in 1985.

Scott Norton, Q.C., a partner at Stewart McKelvey, is appointed a judge of the Supreme Court of Nova Scotia in Pictou. He replaces Justice N.M. Scaravelli, who elected to become a supernumerary judge effective December 16, 2016. Justice Norton previously served as the Vice-Chair of Saint Mary's University.

Read the official release announcing the appointments.