Founding Partner – CDL Apprentice Program – Scotiabank

The purpose of the CDL Apprentice Program is to address the gender gap in STEM. This is an online, multi-module program for women-identified individuals including two-spirit, transgender and non-binary people of 14-18 years of age. Individuals will have a curiosity for STEM-related topics and a keen interest for how science and technology is transforming the world and the opportunities available to the next generation of leaders.

CDL provides experiences to foster an entrepreneurial mindset and encourage individuals to challenge themselves and current statistics. Women represent 51% of the population yet continue to be underrepresented in technical studies and careers, women led startups, and only 3% of all venture capital is deployed to women. The CDL community is committed to sharing its collective knowledge and experience to support students in their growth and development.


Applications for the 2021/22 Apprentice Program are now closed.

How It Works

Students who apply and are accepted into the program commit to achieving the CDL Apprentice Badge. Students register and attend theme-focused modules including: Artificial Intelligence, Health, Energy, and Oceans.

Along with global business leaders, the CDL community includes world-leading scientists, engineers and economists.

Students will meet peers from across the CDL network and interact with the CDL team and community members. An integrated approach of large and small break-out room activities are incorporated into the virtual modules.

Meet The Experts:

Ideal Student

The ideal candidates are young women between 14-18 years of age. A curious, open-mind person who enjoys testing ideas and solving problems – someone looking to connect with others with similar interests in STEM, business and entrepreneurship. Students must have a parent/guardian sign a participation agreement to access the CDL community.

The Format

The CDL Apprentice Program offers six themed modules, each two hours in length and requires the participant to attend on the designated date and time. If accepted into the program, you can register for one or all of the offerings. Students who complete three modules will receive their CDL Apprentice Badge and a letter of achievement. Upon completion of four modules, a student receives the CDL Apprentice Grad status.

CDL Modules

The AI Module introduces students to the application of artificial intelligence and machine learning to a wide variety of problems. Understanding how pattern detection leads to prediction, optimization and automation impacting areas such as: computing hardware, sensors, robotics, computer vision, privacy and digital infrastructure.

The Energy Module highlights innovative and novel solutions focused on accelerating the transition and diversification of energy systems and the optimization of existing resource operations. Areas of interest include: emissions management, carbon capture, energy infrastructure, renewable energy, batteries, and fuel cells, and water and wastewater treatment.

The Oceans Module introduces students to some of the world’s mega trends and the impact on ocean innovations. Emerging technologies transforming the sustainable ocean economy including: transportation/logistics, sustainable fishing and offshore aquaculture, ocean resources and marine bio-products in food, offshore energy, naval and defense.

The Health Module highlights science and technologies with the potential to meaningfully enhance human health and wellness. Areas of interest include: biotechnology, diagnostics tools/platforms, digital health, medical devices, therapeutics, biopharmaceuticals and other drug discoveries.


For more information contact:

“My experience at Creative Destruction Lab was absolutely unreal. From the moment I walked through the door, I knew I was walking into something life-changing, and I was right.”

Catarina Leite, Toronto, ON Calgary: Haskayne School of Business

Hear What Past Participants Have to Say

5 Reasons Why Startups Fail by Tanisha Bassan who shadowed Ash Munshi, former CTO of Yahoo

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The real key to creating a high-impact business by Ananya Chadha who shadowed Ken Nickerson, CEO of iBinary and Board Member at OMERS Ventures

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Through CDL’s mission to transform science projects into massively scalable products and services that benefit humankind, a unique opportunity was formed. In 2015, CDL invited young women with an interest in STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) and entrepreneurship to participate in the CDL program.

Since its inception, the program has hosted over 900 students across the CDL network, which includes nine post-secondary institutions in four countries.

Applications for the 2022/23 Program Year are now open!