HIGHLINE announced today that it has renewed its partnership with Emily Carr University to match the school’s top design students with the Canadian accelerator’s portfolio of startups.
The partnership has taken a few iterations. The initial pilot program in fall of 2013 paired five design students from Emily Carr with HIGHLINE startups. A second iteration in spring of 2014 were taught to blend design with Lean UX methodologies to solve pre-defined problems, like creating data visualization assets for ebook publishing platform BitLit. The renewed partnership will take the program national, embedding Emily Carr students with HIGHLINE portfolio companies in both Vancouver and Toronto (disclosure: BetaKit’s East and West Coast offices are housed in HIGHLINE’s Vancouver and Toronto co-working spaces).
“VC-backed startups are realizing that design is not only a valuable differentiator, but also becoming a necessity in building salient products,” said Marcus Daniels, co-founder & CEO of HIGHLINE in a statement to BetaKit. “Couple this with our recent strategic partnership with Lighthouse Labs, and HIGHLINE is the first pan-Canadian investment platform to give its portfolio a unique edge in building design-driven digital products.”
In addition to real-world experience, students will receive weekly feedback and critique from professors at Emily Carr’s Social+Interactive Media Centre.