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Nicholas Tingley
Vita Developments
Fall River, NS


Nicholas Tingley is a man on a mission. With a vision of his ideal career tucked firmly in the back of his mind, Tingley, 21, has been gathering all of the education and real life experience he needs to set in motion the dream of starting his own property development company.


“I’ve been on job sites with my dad since I was four,” says Tingley. With years of significant construction experience already behind him, Tingley landed himself a job working at the Pro Desk at Home Depot dishing out advice to seasoned professionals and first-time builders alike. “The great thing about Home Depot is that they’re paying half my tuition,” Tingley adds.


As a business student at Saint Mary’s University, Tingley just finished his third year of a double major in entrepreneurship and marketing. He’s also taken on the role of president of ACE (Advancing Canadian Entrepreneurship) at Saint Mary’s, an organization which raised over $60,000 for cancer research last year, and gave away a further $27,000 in scholarships.


It was in this entrepreneurial breeding ground that Tingley got the itch to start his own company. “I already knew quite a bit about construction, but I knew I needed to learn more about the business side of things,” explains Tingley. With this in mind, he launched Vita Developments (, a construction company that focuses on building decks and fences in the HRM.


Unlike most new start-ups, Tingley already had most of the tools and equipment he needed to run his business. But what he was missing was the cash flow to market his company and the cushion to pay his crew on time even if a client was late in paying him.


Through his involvement with ACE, Tingley heard about the Student in Business loan program and he was quick to apply for financing. “The funding I got from the Student in Business program gave me the flexibility to promote the company without overextending myself,” says Tingley. He’s been able to get decals for his truck, business cards, signs, advertising, t-shirts and pay for all the administrative paperwork associated with starting a new business. He can also pay his crew a good wage at the end of each day, giving them more incentive to show up, work hard and get the job done well and on time.


“The funding has really given me a more solid business because I now have the cash to do what I need to do,” explains Tingley, “but it’s more than just funding.” The program has given Tingley a head start in business through the mentorship and training they provide. “The Student in Business program really is a great opportunity,” Tingley concludes, “and a great experience.”


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