UC is proud of its spirit of innovation and entrepreneurship. Our alumni are testament to our UC culture of ‘problem solving, creativity and kiwi ‘No 8 wire’ mentality. It’s part of our DNA and we love celebrating our alumni success.
More and more of our alumni and current students are keen to explore ways to enable positive change in the world through the development of a product or a business and sometimes this results in financial success.
We are inviting our entrepreneurial alumni to celebrate their achievements by partnering with the University to grow more great change in the world through the UC FoundX Pledge.
The UC FoundX Pledge is the University of Canterbury’s own version of a Founders Pledge and is a loyalty programme designed to strengthen the connection between successful UC Alumni and entrepreneurial students at the University. In the same way that the UC Partner’s In Excellence programme has encouraged people to leave a legacy to UC in their will and to be celebrated in their lifetime, the UC FoundX pledge programme aims to encourage UC Alumni entrepreneurs to pledge to support the next generation of innovative and entrepreneurial students.
The Founders Pledge is an initiative that took shape in the United States and is growing into a global movement, spreading into the United Kingdom, Australia and now, New Zealand. Several educational institutions, such as UC Berkeley and Dartmouth, have run very successful Founders Pledge programmes.
Essentially, these are pledge societies for entrepreneurial alumni who have started companies, where the entrepreneur pledges to donate to their alma mater after exiting their startups and realising the value of their equity. But it is much more than this: it is a community of founders and entrepreneurs, committed to giving back and maximising impact for good through pre-liquidation philanthropy and associated activities.
The intention of FoundX is to build an entrepreneurial and innovative ecosystem for alumni to connect with current student entrepreneurs and the University in a meaningful way. Members of FoundX will have opportunities to engage in a range of activities such as coaching and mentoring entrepreneurial students, sharing expertise and experiences through guest presentations and workshops designed for students, and events specifically for FoundX members to engage with students doing amazing things.
In addition, the UC FoundX Pledge community will be a focal point for members to build personal and professional networks with other alumni. The community will receive specific e-communications and resources, as well as invitations to special alumni events around the world.
Under the UC FundX initiative, UC has established a startup fund that enables our entrepreneurial Alumni to more directly support the next generation of UC’s innovative and entrepreneurial students through the UC Foundation.
FundX will appeal to entrepreneurial Alumni who want to have more involvement, engagement and connection with the students their donation supports.
The UC FundX fund resides within UC Foundation and provides direct funding to student startups. Students often require financial support to create, test and validate products and services. Current options rely on equity investment, rebates or matching funds, all of which are frequently inaccessible to student founders. FundX is designed to help fill that gap. We anticipate the fund would distribute funds ranging from $500 up to $10k to individual students. All students seeking money from this fund will have to go through a process similar to that required for Angel Investment.
Mark Rocket – Christchurch entrepreneur, innovator and aerospace enthusiast
‘When I sold my first successful business I made a significant contribution to a charity. It’s the ideal time to make a gift when you have the opportunity to give back and to make a real difference for a project that resonates with you.'
Join UC FoundX
Over the years, UC Alumni have created a range of exciting startups around the world. We are proud of the success of our Alumni. We warmly invite you to join our UC FoundX Ecosystem. We hope you will become part of this network as a way to further support collaboration, innovation, and the sharing of pioneering ideas and resources within the University and out to the wider world.
To find out or join UC FoundX get in touch with: