• Phil Jarvis

Mindset Matters

Transitions Canada Coalition is currently mobilizing coalition partners for two pan-Canadian projects. One of them is PowerPlay Young Entrepreneurs®. Here is a link to recently completed trailer for a 40-minute documentary on this program called Mindset Matters.

The Beedie School of Business at Simon Fraser University, recently published an impact study on the program entitled Mindset Matters: Encouraging an Entrepreneurial Mindset in K-12 Curriculum.


It is widely believed that empowering young people with an entrepreneurial mindset is the key to developing more entrepreneurial behaviour and preparing youth to flourish in our emerging economy. However, little data exists to show if entrepreneurial education actually leads to a more entrepreneurial mindset. This study examines the impact of PowerPlay Young Entrepreneurs (PYE), a 6-week educational program for students from grades 4 through 8. The program, offered by a Canadian not-for-profit organization, incorporates project-based, experiential learning that fully aligns with best practice in K-12 education. The data for empirical analysis is provided by two student surveys totaling 2,453 student participants and an educator survey of 44 teachers in the Surrey and Langley school districts in British Columbia, Canada. Results from the teacher survey indicate strong support for PYE among educators, who appreciate the program’s ease of use and value in terms of student engagement. Student survey results indicate the PYE program generates an 11% increase in reported levels of growth mindset in students and significantly increases entrepreneurial skills and capacities. A structural equation analysis also shows that the key to encouraging entrepreneurial behaviour is developing a student’s entrepreneurial mindset. The mindset has 2.5 to 3 times more impact on entrepreneurial behaviour than relevant skills or supportive parental/peer attitudes. While these latter elements are helpful, the true driving force for entrepreneurial behaviour is the mindset that students develop towards entrepreneurship through the learning process. This study demonstrates that when encouraging entrepreneurship, mindset matters.

If your department, school district or other organization wants to help us enhance, test, and deploy PowerPlay Young Entrepreneurs, at no cost, let us know. You can do so by getting in touch here.

Phil Jarvis

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