Gustavson School of Business
Did you know that ACE program teacher and University of Victoria Entrepreneurship Champion, Dr. Brock Smith was a judge for Canada’s Next Top Ad Exec competition for 10 years? Did you know that he is also a group commissioner and Scouts Canada leader?
Dr. Smith graduated with a Bachelor of Commerce degree from the University of British Columbia in 1984. After his graduation, he went on to join the IBM Canada team in various sales and marketing roles in Western Canada. After working with IBM, Dr. Smith achieved his PhD in marketing from the University of Western Ontario, where in 1992 he won the International Academy of Marketing Science Doctoral Dissertation award – an award for the best marketing Ph.D. dissertation in the world that year.
Dr. Smith joined the University of Victoria faculty in 1991 and is very active in creating opportunities for students to expand their learning at the University. In 1997, Brock co-founded the entrepreneurship program at the Gustavson School of Business at the University of Victoria. This program has won a number of international awards including the ‘model undergraduate entrepreneurship program award’ by the United States Association of Small Business Enterprise. Dr. Smith founded UVic’s Innovation Centre for Entrepreneurs which is now the Coast Capital Savings Innovation Centre at the University of Victoria. He has also served as the director of the Bachelor of Commerce program and academic director of UVic’s former hospitality management program.
In addition to creating opportunities for entrepreneurs through teaching and championing programs at the University of Victoria, Dr. Smith conducts research to provide entrepreneurs with tools for success. Dr. Smith’s research focuses on analyzing what expert entrepreneurs know and do differently. Dr. Smith hopes his research about the mind-set of expert entrepreneurs will help prospective entrepreneurs learn to become experts more efficiently. When discussing his research, Dr. Smith notes that “[e]ntrepreneurship can be learned. The challenge then is to figure out what needs to be learned and to learn it so that prospective entrepreneurs can be more successful and not have to learn by trial and error.” Dr. Smith’s research translates to his teaching, where he embeds new value creation into student’s learning. Dr. Smith teaches his students with a focus on sustainable management of businesses through taking into account the economic, social, and environmental impacts of their efforts.
In the ACE program, Dr. Smith has taught six main topics: creating innovative product concepts; value propositions; developing entrepreneurial expertise; market research; marketing strategy; and marketing-communications strategy. “Success in entrepreneurship is primarily about what you know, what you do with that information, and how you identify and realize opportunity. Realizing opportunity comes down to creating an effective strategy and thinking through the details to execute it well.” Dr. Smith encourages students to approach opportunities with an entrepreneurial mindset. Watch this video of one of Dr. Smith’s former students who has gone on to host a show on the Comedy Network.
We at ACE are thankful to have the opportunity to work with Dr. Smith to help students along their entrepreneurial journey so they can turn their passion into prosperity. To learn more about Dr. Smith’s work please visit these links:
Dr. Brock Smith is an educator of the Aboriginal Canadian Entrepreneurs Program. 137 Aboriginal Entrepreneurs have graduated from the award winning ACE Program, which focuses on bridging Aboriginal culture with the key elements of entrepreneurship and business creation. The ACE program made possible through the collective efforts of our partnering regions, communities, institutions, and faculties.