Life after graduation

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This presentation was given to UW students who are graduating from Engineering. I was asked to share my storey about how I got into doing what I now do, how Mindscape was founded, what inspired me, what help I needed, what mistakes I made, ... entrepreneurial stuff.

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  • What to expect: 30 minutes or so for arrivals, networking, food and refreshments, followed by the alumnus talk for 30 - 45 minutes, followed by 15+ minutes for questions, then another 15 - 30 minutes for networking again
    What to speak on: The students would love to hear about how Mindscape Innovations came to be, how Derek’s experience led him down his current career path, and how his education as an Electrical Engineer at UW helped him throughout his career so far.
    Contacts:
    Kristopher Cates-Bristol, David Birnbaum, EngSoc President, and Puneet Natt, EngSoc Student Life Commissioner
  • To begin with, it’s worth noting that all the insanity around us notwithstanding there will be a moment when this age will start to make sense: That brave new world will look very different than it does now...
    Joshua Cooper Ramo, author of The Age of the Unthinkable
  • The environment is hitting its limits.
    Human industry is changing.
    “Change” = opportunity, which calls for leadership
  • (recall “Who moved my Cheese?”)
    The ways that industry used to feed itself are no longer working.
    Like mice in a maze, their cheese has been moved, and they’re lost: learning from scratch.
  • I’ve never been one to shy away from a challenge, so the environmental challenge has drawn me in.
    Who am I, and why am I here today?
    From rural Kingston. Studied @ UW (EE ‘02)
    Electrical Engineer, renewable energy / green building specialist (LEED®, net-zero, etc)
    Consulting with Stantec / Enermodal / Mindscape since ’99 (various capacities on engineering / sustainable design teams)
    Father of six (ages 11, 9, 6, 4, 2, and 5 mos)
    Volunteer actively (Built Green Canada, CaGBC, NZEHC, CRESNET, OSEA, GEA, CREW, LIFE, Sustainable Waterloo, CC, …)
    hiking, reading, music (mostly percussion: djembe, didgeridoo, rain sticks, etc)
    rec sports (ultimate, squash, soccer, more hiking)
    Environmental issues (climate change, local energy / food)
    Authoring a book (“Unintended Consequences”)
    Volunteer stuff:
    CaGBC LEED for Homes (Tech Co-Chair) & ND Committees
    Net-Zero Energy Home Coalition (NZEHC), Tech Advisor
    High Performance Homes Partnership (HP2), Founding Pres.
    Canadian Residential Energy Services Network (CRESNET), Founding Member
    Ontario Sustainable Energy Association (OSEA), Director
    Green Energy Act, Management Committee
    CREW President & CREW-green Founder
    LIFE (Baden energy co-op), Advisor
    Conestoga College PAC helping create a renewable energy trades program
  • Prefer personal power instead of community owned (eg: coop)? Contact Mindscape.
    Keep brief: <1 min.
    Mindscape Innovations, the 2008 Gowlings "New Business of the Year", which provides core enabling services to both the green building sector and the renewable energy sector: from feasibility studies to renewable energy system solutions to processing grants and incentives to certifying ENERGY STAR or LEED buildings.
  • RoW EMS Bldg – 20kW PV (RESOP connected)
    WISE – ~40 homes, 1-5kW, RESOP connected
  • Small not necessarily the best example
    Not a good wind regime locally
    Scalable – offers a valid business model that is bankable
  • Bottom line:
    There are some legitimate drawbacks to wind energy, but they’re extremely minor compared to the alternatives, or even compared to the risks we take when we get into the car and drive to work every morning.
    Note: wind is not unreliable – it’s intermittent. Important difference. Turbines are the most reliable generators around – far more so than nuclear.
    “unfounded and unprovable silliness”:
    Ask for recent reports based on recent data – note that the industry has advanced significantly over the last few decades, and every year counts. All of reports against wind that actually have valid concerns are very obsolete.
    20 yrs. of reports in Europe, Canada (yes local), and around the globe that deal with all the concerns raised thus far.
    “There is nothing new under the sun”, especially with wind energy antagonists.
    Bird kill stats from CanWEA (per 10,000 avian fatalities):
    <1 from wind turbines
    50 from communication towers
    710 from pesticides
    850 from vehicles
    1060 from cats
    1370 from high tension lines
    5820 from collisions with buildings / windows
  • Work to live, don’t live to work (you won’t survive)
    Enjoy your work: startups are tough
  • 90% of lone shark startups fail in the first 5 yrs
    40-50% of partnered stratups fail in the first 5 yrs (drastic improvement in odds)
    Minority shares of something great are better than 100% of nothing
  • It’s up to me. It’s up to you. It’s up to us.
    Start where you are. Get some help. Let’s go make a difference.
  • Life after graduation

    1. 1. Life after School University of Waterloo, EngSoc, 2014-03-05 Derek Satnik, P.Eng., LEED® AP Mindscape Innovations Group Inc. www.mi-group.ca © Mindscape Innovations Group Inc.
    2. 2. Presentation Agenda • • • • • • • Intro. to Derek Satnik Intro. to Mindscape How it all started Some of my / Mindscape’s projects Advice for would-be entrepreneurs Resources Q&A
    3. 3. The World is Different
    4. 4. Environmental Issues
    5. 5. A bit of my story: Derek Satnik, P.Eng., LEED • • • • • • • ® AP From rural Kingston. Studied @ UW (EE ‘02) Electrical Engineer, renewable energy / green building specialist (LEED®, net-zero, etc) Consulting with Stantec / Enermodal / Mindscape since ’99 (various capacities on engineering / sustainable design teams) Father of six (ages 11, 9, 6, 4, 2, and 5 mos) Volunteer actively (Built Green Canada, CaGBC, NZEHC, CRESNET, OSEA, GEA, CREW, LIFE, Sustainable Waterloo, CC, …) hiking, reading, music (mostly percussion: djembe, didgeridoo, rain sticks, etc) Authoring a book (“Unintended Consequences” on globalization, environment, and community)
    6. 6. Mindscape = Engineering & Consulting • Turn-key full lifecycle solutions for environmentally and technologically enhanced homes, businesses, and communities. • 15 awards since 2007: municipal - international • Core enabling services to both the green building sector and the renewable energy sector: such as… – Engineering studies, audits, and energy system (re)designs – Policy and (incentive) program development; – Project management, and processing grants and incentives – Training & certification for high performance buildings (ENERGY STAR, LEED, Net-Zero, and more) Photo by K. Stevens, 2008 – Ulsan
    7. 7. Residential Green Building Rating Systems Platinum Energy Performance Gold LEEDing 25% Silver Platinum Gold Certified Mainstream 50% Silver Building Code Bronze Environmental Performance © Mindscape Innovations Group Inc. Bottom 25% & code violators
    8. 8. ICI Green Building Rating Systems Energy Performance Living Building Challenge LEED NC, CI, CS, EB:O&M Platinum Gold LEEDing 25% Silver Certified Mainstream 50% Energy benchmarking: mNECB / ASHRAE Building Code Environmental Performance Photo from http://www.americanprogress.org/issues/2009/04/img/solar_church_onpage.jpg © Mindscape Innovations Group Inc. Bottom 25% & code violators
    9. 9. Case Study: Ontario Green Home Williamsburg Homes, Kitchener, ON • 50% energy savings: R50 attic, R32 walls, R20 bsmt, R10 slab • Advanced HVAC • 50% water savings • Local Ontario materials © Mindscape Innovations Group Inc. • ENERGY STAR, Solar Ready, LEED Platinum, BUILT GREEN Platinum • $30k green premium
    10. 10. Case Study: REEP House REEP Green Solutions, Kitchener, ON http://www.reepwaterlooregion.ca/prog_house.php • $25k for ~60% energy savings • Book a tour! © Mindscape Innovations Group Inc.
    11. 11. ~1,000 other buildings: commercial, industrial, residential… Energy audits, LEED, solar, and much more…
    12. 12. Solar PV Experience: >20,000 kW Canada’s first solar neighbourhood, Waterloo, ON ~2.5kW / home Power Spar Menova Energy Inc. Region of Waterloo EMS Fleet Centre 20kW
    13. 13. Wind Energy Experience: • • • • • • • • • Feasibility Design Permitting & Approvals Utility Agreements Project Management Public Engagement Social Friction Mitigation Tendering Commissioning
    14. 14. Social Friction: Myths & Misunderstandings About Wind Energy Myths • Infrasound • Bird / bat kill - more likely to die from a cat, car, or building • Ground vibrations … A long list of unfounded and unprovable silliness Misunderstandings • Land use - farm up to tower base • Audible noise - quieter than the wind • Intermittent (“blows when it wants to”) Online FAQ: www.mi-group.ca/faq
    15. 15. Advice to Would-be Entrepreneurs… • Identify your passions • Scan for opportunities: seek advice, volunteer • Know the business basics: 1. Need a Market 2. Need a Product/Solution 3. Need a Method • Invest in your weaknesses & get help • Build from your strengths • Don’t try to do or be everything: have a specialty • Tell your story!
    16. 16. Humbling Reminders • Every small business is a family business • Most fail • Technical specialists are not necessarily business leaders • Don’t be afraid to share: 10% of something great is much better than 100% of nothing • Have a plan
    17. 17. Resources for startups… • Regional Small Business Centres • Community Futures Development Corp http://www.ontcfdc.com/ • Ontario’s Ministry of Small Business & Entrepreneurship http://www.ontariocanada.com/ont can/1medt/smallbiz/en/sb_startbiz _en.jsp • On green buildings & energy: http://www.mi-group.ca/ (blog, news, more)
    18. 18. I skate to where the  puck is going to be,  not where it has  been. - Wayne Gretzky
    19. 19. NATURE…    …does not know GOOD…     …does not know EVIL… knows only Consequences
    20. 20. Thank you! dsatnik@mi-group.ca 519.744.3592 www.mi-group.ca Big news coming: watch our blog! http://www.mi-group.ca/blog

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