Mitacs funding enables hands-on experience for Kwantlen Polytechnic University student

Surrey, B.C. A project to help building companies land more work in the Lower Mainland has received support from Kwantlen Polytechnic University thanks to a $15,000 award from Mitacs.  

Mitacs has partnered with BuildMapper to provide the funds for a project that KPU student Tina Charmchi carries out under the supervision of psychology instructor Dr. Levente Orbán. BuildMapper is a B.C. grown tech startup that has built an online platform to help the trades acquire more jobs as it aggregates all construction jobs in Metro Vancouver and the Fraser Valley.

“As we at Mitacs celebrate 20 years of driving Canadian innovation, we are delighted to provide this first funding opportunity for Kwantlen Polytechnic University students,” says Alejandro Adem, chief executive officer of Mitacs, a not-for-profit organization that fosters growth and innovation in Canada.

“We look forward to many more opportunities to partner with KPU to enable meaningful opportunities for students that drive innovation.”

Charmchi says the project helped her learn coding skills and useful industry knowledge in a condensed timeframe.

“The Mitacs Internship has been a remarkable learning opportunity,” adds Charmchi. “I have been able to apply knowledge acquired throughout my degree in a non-academic setting and I have also been able to expand my skillset beyond what my program could have offered.”

The collaborative data science project is looking to automate and enhance the platform’s algorithms as BuildMapper looks to expand across Canada.

“BuildMapper is extremely excited to be working with Dr. Levente Orbán on two progressive projects that will help automate our processes and expand our offering to the rest of Canada,” says Jithan Virk, chief executive officer of BuildMapper.

“Mitacs Accelerate internships is a very significant step for university-industry collaborations at KPU. This clears the path for cutting-edge research and development projects with companies across Canada, and opens incredible skill-building and experiential learning opportunities for KPU students,” says Orbán.


About Mitacs

Mitacs is a not-for-profit organization that fosters growth and innovation in Canada for business and academia. Working with 70 universities, thousands of companies, and both federal and provincial governments, Mitacs builds partnerships that support industrial and social innovation in Canada. Open to all disciplines and all industry sectors, projects can span a wide range of areas, including manufacturing, business processes, IT, social sciences, design, and more. Mitacs is funded by the Government of Canada and the Government of British Columbia, along with every other province, industry and not-for-profit partners, and academic partners.


About Kwantlen Polytechnic University

Kwantlen Polytechnic University has served the Metro Vancouver region since 1981, and has opened doors to success for more than 200,000 learners. Based at five campuses across Richmond, Surrey and Langley, KPU offers a comprehensive range of sought-after programs in business, arts, design, health, science and horticulture, trades and technology, and academic and career advancement. Around 20,000 students annually choose one of our wide selection of programs that blend thought with action, including bachelor’s degrees, diplomas, certificates, apprenticeships and graduate diplomas. Learn more at