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‘Changed my life’

Award established in engineering student's memory securing graduate's future

Student Life

By Sarah Joy Cook

What do you get when you combine student entrepreneurial opportunities, a growing culture of innovation and dedicated donor support?

Jared Butt, a white man in his early 20s, is standing and smiling at the camera. He is wearing a light-blue collared shirt.
Jared Butt graduated with a bachelor of commerce (co-op.)(hons.) degree in May 2023.
Photo: Rich Blenkinsopp

Memorial alumnus Jared Butt’s path of entrepreneurship.

While completing his undergraduate degree in the Faculty of Business Administration, he started not one, but two, different business ventures.

Now, as a new graduate and well supported by a $10,000 award established by a generous donor, he is building a bright future.

Embracing opportunities

Mr. Butt’s entrepreneurial spirit first found expression in an enterprise he called Mdium and then later through a second venture, HomeView Media.

Mdium began as a multimedia file transfer service that quickly gained traction.

Bounce Health Innovation is a health-care tech support hub.

Mr. Butt says thanks to assistance from and collaboration with the Bounce team, Mdium transitioned to a business-to-business file transfer tool in the medical field.

The undertaking demonstrated Mr. Butt and the Mdium team’s capabilities and willingness to take on challenges.

“Memorial’s donors truly make a difference. It’s something that I don’t take for granted.” — Jared Butt

HomeView Media, his more recent entrepreneurial endeavour, is a real-estate photography firm that offers a range of services, including photos, drone videos and 3D virtual tours.

The project began in his new venture creation class in the business faculty and continues to grow.

“When I was thinking about Memorial’s business program, before I even applied, it was the aspects related to starting your own business that really intrigued me,” he said. “Courses like personal selling and new venture creation. Now, in hindsight, these have been the most valuable courses in my whole degree. I also appreciate that taking an entrepreneurial approach in your career, whether it’s for your own business or not, is critical for success.”

‘Changed my life’

Throughout his academic journey, Mr. Butt received several accolades, scholarships and awards that were instrumental in shaping his student experience.

Jared Butt, a white man in his early 20s, smiles with his hands folded while sitting at one end of a long wooden table with plants and windows behind him.
Jared Butt says receiving the James R. Pearcey Award for Entrepreneurship changed his life.
Photo: Rich Blenkinsopp

For him, the significance of the awards was not just the financial support that came with some, but the motivation and inspiration they provided.

“The recognition alone was a big deal to me because of the amount of hard work I put into my schoolwork, my extracurriculars and everything in my life,” said Mr. Butt. “Memorial’s donors truly make a difference. It’s something that I don’t take for granted. It’s helped me move forward with my career aspirations and entrepreneurial endeavours — it’s honestly something that’s really changed my life.”

His aspirations include becoming a chartered professional accountant, growing his real estate media company and venturing into property management.

Impact of donor support

Mr. Butt’s story highlights the life-changing impact donors can have on students.

During the final year of his undergraduate degree, he received the James R. Pearcey Award for Entrepreneurship.

The James R. Pearcey Award for Entrepreneurship was established by a generous donation from Wade Dawe (B.Comm.’92) in memory of James R. Pearcey, a civil engineering graduate and former president of the 1993 class at Memorial University.

“Their success fuels our collective potential.” — Wade Dawe

The award consists of $10,000 for the winner of a business plan competition administered by the Memorial Centre for Entrepreneurship.

Mr. Dawe is the current president of Brigus Capital Inc. and was recognized this past year with the prestigious P.J. Gardiner 2023 Newfoundland and Labrador Entrepreneur of the Year Award from the Faculty of Business Administration for his outstanding success as a venture capitalist, entrepreneur and investor.

Wade Dawe, a white man in his late 40s wears a suit and tie against a white backdrop
Wade Dawe
Photo: Submitted

Mr. Dawe, who also created several entrepreneurial ventures while a student in the Faculty of Business Administration, has played a pivotal role in the founding and success of several companies across a variety of sectors as a financier and company founder.

Through the James R. Pearcy Award for Entrepreneurship, he has made a real difference in the lives of many young business students at Memorial University.

“I firmly believe that supporting the dreams and ambitions of young entrepreneurs is not just an investment in their future, but in the prosperity of our communities here in Newfoundland and Labrador,” he said. “Witnessing students like Jared thrive and innovate with the assistance of this award is truly inspiring. Their success fuels our collective potential, and I’m honoured to be part of their journey.”

Support our students

The generosity of Memorial University’s donors is creating incredible opportunities for student success and 100 per cent of every donation goes to the chosen award or intended area of support.

For more information about giving to Memorial University or to make a donation to support our students, please visit here.

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