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Ama La Vida

Spend your next summer designing a social enterprise, learning Spanish, and travelling in South America.

Impaqto Quito director Michelle Arevalo-Carpenter runs a session on venture design.

Spend your summer in South America while you learn how to create sustainable, social ventures that tackle global challenges. Embrace Ecuador’s vibrant culture while learning one of the fastest growing, and widely spoken languages.

Change Lab is going international. Join us this Summer (2017) as we collaborate and innovate in one of South America’s fastest growing economies, Ecuador.

Combining three unique components, (study, intern, travel), Change Lab: Ecuador explores social entrepreneurship from a global perspective. The program is open to undergraduate students of all backgrounds, running from late May to mid-August, 2017.

Gain career relevant experience, travel, study, and explore South America, all while earning credits.


    Earn credits while studying social venture design and Spanish in Vancouver and Quito. More info…


    Work with Ecuadorian entrepreneurs and build your own social enterprise. More info…


    Spend your summer exploring the Amazon, the Andes and everywhere in between.  Our photos


Are you currently registered at SFU and considering participating in Change Lab Ecuador?

The first 10 students from SFU who apply, and are accepted into the program, will receive a $400 USD grant to help offset the program fees. Please contact us at if you have any further questions.


Summer 2017 (May 22nd – August 15th)


Final Applications due February 28th, 2017.

Upcoming Info Session:

Simon Fraser University (Downtown Vancouver)

Wednesday, Feb 1st (Radius Office) 5:30-6:30
Location: Charles Chang Innovation Centre, 308 West Hastings st, (entrance via Hamilton St)
Simon Fraser University (Burnaby)
MondayFeb 6th, 1:00-2:00
Location: SFU Burnaby Campus, West Mall Room 2210

Program Details: Study

Class Details

You will be enrolled in two courses during the program; one through the Beedie School of Business at Simon Fraser University (Social Entrepreneurship), and the second, through our partner in Quito, Universidad San Francisco de Quito (Introductory Spanish).The SFU Business course begins with a three-day intensive May 22nd in downtown Vancouver. The course continues online while you are in Quito

The USFQ Spanish course will begin the first week students are in Quito with 8 hours of in-class time. Each remaining week will include 4 hours of in-class study.


Course 1: BUS 4XX – Social Entrepreneurship and Venture Design
Course 2: SPAN 1XX – Introductory Spanish for Non-Native Speakers

Participants completing the program will earn 3 credits per course, for a combined total of 6 credits. SFU’s BUS 490 is an upper division course, while the Spanish course will count as lower division.

*SFU students can use this course towards the Innovation and Entrepreneurship concentration or certificate.

Program Details: Entrepreneur Internship

Entrepreneur Internship Details

During your time in Ecuador you’ll be working out of Impaqto Quito, Ecuador’s leading enterprise accelerator. The internship component of Change Lab Ecuador has three core components, 1) Salto Sociale, 2) Qataliza Bootcamp and 3) Collaborative Venture Design.

Salto Sociale (Week 3 – 10)

The Salto Sociale program is a local, social enterprise incubator. Salto Sociale will run for 8 weeks, and will match each program participant with a local entrepreneur.

Qataliza (2 day weekend program at the half way-point)

The Qataliza Bootcamp will take place 4 weeks into your time in Quito. Over the course of 2 intensive days, you’ll learn how Ecuadorians have designed and created successful social enterprises, preparing you for your own venture design experience.

Venture Design (Week 5 – 10)

After you’ve completed the intensive bootcamp, you’ll be challenged to design a social venture suitable for either Ecuador or Canada. The Venture Design element of the program brings you and your fellow students together, into small teams, where you’ll collaborate to design a venture. When you come back to Vancouver, you’ll complete the program by pitching your design to your colleagues and the entrepreneurial community of RADIUS SFU.

Partner Organizations

Dates & Costs


The cost of the program is inclusive of the following:

  • Tuition and registration at USFQ
  • International Transcripts
  • All social venture design programming + access to co-working space
  • Accommodation in a conveniently located, secure, shared guest house with access to kitchen, laundry services, and WiFi
  • Arrival pick-up at Mariscal-Sucre International Airport (Quito)
  • In-country staff support throughout the program
    • Including weekly group seminars and routine one-on-one check in’s
  • Pre-program departure orientation and check ins with Insight and SFU Team
  • Post-program debriefing sessions upon return, including pitch session at RADIUS Vancouver

Program Total (Summer 2017) –  $3,925 USD

The cost of the program does not include:

    • Course registration for BUS 4XX at SFU
    • Airfare
    • Travel Insurance (required)
    • Food and personal expenditures

Upcoming Program

Summer 2017

Application Period: 

October 1st, 2016 – February 28th, 2017

Program Dates: May 22nd – August 15th, 2017

*Acceptance on a Rolling Basis: The sooner you apply, the sooner we can evaluate your application. Programs do fill up, so if Change Lab International is something your considering, apply early.


Program FAQS

When does Change Lab International: Ecuador run?

The program runs in the summer term. Please see the ‘Dates and Costs’ section for more details. Our summer 2017 program will be the first SFU Change Lab program to take place outside of Vancouver.

What prerequisites are required to participate in this program?

At minimum, students must have completed 36 units (credits), and be in good academic standing to participate in the program. Departmental approval is also required.

When is the application period for the program?

The application dates are provided in the ‘Dates and Costs’ section. Applicants who apply before the early entry deadline will be interviewed and accepted on a rolling basis.

How much does the program cost?

For the cost of the program, please refer to the above section ‘dates and costs’.

Will I receive academic credit for participating in the program?

Students will earn course credit for successfully completing the classes at both SFU (Business) and USFQ (Spanish). You do not have to be a business student to participate in this program.

What will I be doing while in Quito?

The program is made up of three core components, study, design, travel. While in Ecuador, participants will study Spanish, design social ventures, and work with local Ecuadorian entrepreneurs. Participants will have the opportunity to travel on the weekends, or once the program concludes.

What type of support can I expect in Ecuador?

As an SFU recognized program, participants will be required to participate in extensive pre-departure trainings. While in Ecuador, Insight will have a program facilitator present who will assist in delivering the program. In addition, staff at Impaqto Quito, where students will spend most of their time working, will assist in providing support specific to your design experience.

Where will I live?

We rent out local apartments where the cohort, along with our facilitator, live throughout the program. The units are modern, furnished, and conveniently located in safe and secure neighbourhood of Quito.

Our Quito Residence

Ready to Apply?

Are you interested in applying to the Semester in Social Enterprise program? Applications Close February 28th, 2017. Apply early, we accept on a rolling basis!