The entrepreneurial spirit with Laurie started when she photocopied her new babysitting certificate and went door-to-door in her local community at the age of 12 to distribute them. Little did she know it would turn into a full-time job after school, so much so, that she had to hire her friends, less her admin costs of course.
When Laurie went to the Dominican Republic to teach in 1993, she noticed that some of her student came to school without any lunch. So, she ordered her first credit card and racked it up to it's $500 limit by building a school cafeteria equipped with a new concrete pad, cinder blocks, a tin roof, a wooden gate with a lock, a plug-in sandwich maker, used stove and refrigerator. Her famous "hot-pockets" were formed and students did not go hungry after that.
By the age of 22, Laurie had her first corporation, a travel agency called Campus Travel, which helped students work, study and volunteer abroad. Before the age of the internet, she placed small classified ads in the local newspaper's travel section and stapled posters on the bulletin boards at the local universities and colleges to advertise her newly created travel packages including study Spanish in Guadalajara, Mexico, save the turtles in Costa Rica, and restore a 12th century basilica in France. The tours virtually sold out instantly.
Since those early years, she has founded many, sold some and is still running a couple of businesses including Romantic Planet Vacations, Canada's first specialists in honeymoons and destination weddings nationwide.