UW ranked among the top universities in the world for entrepreneurship

Graphic by Ahlam Ibrahim

The University of Waterloo was recently ranked among the top 25 universities in the world that produce the most successful entrepreneurs. The rankings, which are published by software company PitchBook, focus on the number of alumni that have launched start-ups backed by venture capital. UW was ranked 22nd globally, with a total of 424 successful companies founded by graduates of the university. 

With a fast-paced, co-op focused atmosphere dominating UW, it’s no surprise that the university would rank among the top universities in the world for founders.

Another factor contributing to the high ranking is the many supports UW has in place to help young entrepreneurs achieve success. The Velocity Incubator, Concept Innovation Hub and GreenHouse are just a few of the entrepreneurial programs and resources available to students.

“Many alumni directly cite Waterloo and Velocity’s programs as critical steps to their entrepreneurial success,” said John Dick, director of Velocity on-campus programs, including Concept, the Problem Lab and Zero Experience. “Many alumni use what they have learned to drive meaningful change as business owners and help transform industries by bringing innovative mindsets to established companies.”

In total, companies founded by Waterloo alumni have raised over $20.1 billion in venture capital funding. Additionally, eight companies founded by alumni were recently ranked in the Deloitte 2021 top 50 fastest growing tech companies.

“At Waterloo, entrepreneurship is in our DNA. We are focused on nurturing talent by creating an environment that removes barriers and allows imagination and impact to lead the way,” said Vivek Goel, president and vice-chancellor of the University of Waterloo.

Goel added that the University of Waterloo is proud to hold this position among so many esteemed colleges and universities around the world. The top three spots on the list were claimed by Stanford University, University of California, Berkeley and Harvard University. UW was the top-ranking Canadian school, with the University of Toronto coming next in 27th place.

“With our unmatched programs for entrepreneurs, our role in supporting the Toronto-Waterloo Tech Corridor and our focus on nurturing the next generation of talent, Waterloo will continue to be a university that positions founders for success,” Goel said.