Dr. Sarah Lubik is the Executive Director of the Charles Chang Institute for Entrepreneurship. She builds platforms, programming, relationships and shared vision to unleash entrepreneurial mindset at SFU and across the country. Sarah’s favourite construct within the entrepreneurial mindset is resilience because it allows us to feel confident and thrive in the midst of the constant changes the world throws at us.
Janice OBriain is a community builder and mindset mentor and has been at the forefront of engaged entrepreneurship at SFU for more than a decade. In her role as Programs Director for the Chang Institute she develops, resources and leads programs that support early-stage ventures, founders, and entrepreneurial mindset development. She is particularly proud of her work leading the Institute’s signature incubator program Coast Capital Venture Connection, which has provided incubation services to 250+ startup teams since 2008 and has helped to launch such impactful ventures as Buyatab, Moment Energy, Employ to Empower, Zennea and Ionomr.
Prior to SFU, Janice was Executive Associate with Calgary’s Arts Commons and General Manager of Kaleidoscope Theatre, a professional theatre for young audiences.
Janice holds both an MBA in Arts & Media Management and a Diploma in Non-Profit Management from the Schulich School of Business (York University), a Bachelor of Music (Honours) from UVic and was the recipient of the 2020 SFU Staff Achievement Award for Innovation.
Ben Chow is the Operations Director with the Charles Chang Institute for Entrepreneurship. His experience ranges from engineering and technology product development to business development. He led corporate functions such as asset divestitures, strategic relationships, and R&D partnership programs as well as providing consulting services to companies in the areas of investor relations, strategic planning, corporate valuation and international market entry.
Ben has a B.A.Sc. in Chemical Engineering-Chemistry Honours from the University of British Columbia and an MBA from the Richard Ivey School of Business, Western University and is a licensed Professional Engineer (P.Eng. – Non-Practicing) in British Columbia.
Angie Van Vliet is the Program Assistant, a key member assisting with the administration of Venture Connection, scheduling of the Executive Director of Charles Chang Institute forEntrepreneurship, and as the first point of contact at the Venture Connection Incubator Office.
Angie has a certificate in Office Administration at Kwantlen College and has taken several courses within the Faculty of Arts at SFU. She continues to take online courses in a variety of interests during her spare time.
With 25 years of experience at SFU, she has found her niche working alongside others with an entrepreneurial mindset. Her unique combination of creativity and planning, utilizing a variety of strategies and innovations is essential to keep all her plates spinning at the same time. She says a good sense of humour helps.
Angie is passionate about self-care and exploring creative expression in the arts and gardening. She balances her off-time with family, friends, pets, and riding the countryside on the back of her husband’s Harley.
Maycko is a dynamic content creator, community builder, and project manager. Maycko utilizes his curiosity to solve problems creatively. As the Manager for Events and Community Engagement, his goals include curating events that put the Chang Institute on the map all while building community connections along the way.
His main focus is building processes and event programming robust enough to withstand the ever-changing landscape of the entrepreneurship ecosystem. Outside of the workplace, Maycko has also been recognized by the plant and Filipinx community for his exceptional commitment to owning his heritage as noted by CBC.
Thomas Partridge is the Incubator Programs Manager with the Charles Chang Institute for Entrepreneurship. He manages the mentorship network, Coast Capital Venture Connection Incubator, Science Entrepreneur Accelerator, Entrepreneurship Co-op, Mentor Meet, and Spark programs. He loves working with startups and is extremely proud to see entrepreneurial passion turn into thriving businesses.
Thomas has a PMP designation and a BBA with a specialization in Marketing from Capilano University. His background is program and project management in the energy, tech, incubator, and accelerator space. He has worked for BC Hydro, FortisBC, Innovate BC, and Foresight (Canada’s Cleantech Accelerator) among others, and utilizes this diversity of experience to advise, position, and support ventures on their journeys of scaling and growth.
As a Communications Coordinator, Joelle manages the communications strategy for the Venture Connection incubator and develops social media and newsletter content for the Chang Institute.
With more than six years of experience working in graphic design, content marketing, and web design at the University of British Columbia and SFU, Joelle uses her creativity and content creation know-how to deliver key communications pieces for the Institute’s programming and events. Joelle explores her entrepreneurial side with her work as a freelance graphic designer, food photographer and plant mom.
Joelle holds a Bachelor of Arts from UBC. She majored in Asian Languages and Culture and holds a minor in International Relations.
Krysta Pallone Helm is the Events and Engagement Coordinator at the Chang Institute. Where there is detailed information and complex ideas needing to be simplified, you’ll find her right at home developing it into messages that resonate and connect our community together.
Krysta’s passion for bringing people together extends to event planning where she thrives off of seeing her plans result in positive, engaging human connections. Previously, Krysta worked in events at nonprofit organizations and different golf courses in the area. She also has experience in sales and public relations during her time at a biotech company. Krysta is also an SFU alumna
Alyanna Salang recently achieved the Bachelor of Business Administration from SFU’s Beedie School of Business, concentrating in Human Resources and Marketing. Her values of community, compassion and empowerment drive her passion to plan events and implement ways to unite communities.
As a PowerPlay Events and Engagement Coordinator, Alyanna seeks to provide opportunities for elementary school students to connect with community members and university students, showcase their accomplishments, and unlock pathways to grow towards their fullest potential. Outside of the Chang Institute, Alyanna extends her love for community building towards her church community as a Young Adults Coordinator and Accounting Coordinator. In her free time, she enjoys reading books, singing, and exploring Vancouver!
Carson Keller is a Recruitment & Special Projects intern at the Chang Institute. He helps to initiate, plan, execute, and close-off recruitment and engagement activities while supporting events and incubator startup programming.
Carson is pursuing a Bachelor of Business Administration at SFU’s Beedie School of Business, and has recently completed an Extended Minor in Contemporary Dance. As a dancer of more than a decade, Carson researches the combination of dance, music, and visual media in an effort to innovate practical approaches to art. He is inspired by a constantly evolving society, its counterparts, and wishes to leave others with a glimpse of the edges of our era.