ECR Logic co-founders Mary De La Garza (left) and John Doershuk with team members Rebekah Gansemer and Elizabeth Reetz, of the UI Office of the State Archaeologist. CREDIT JPEC 
A University of Iowa spinout is positioned for progress following a $25,000 award from the state's Proof of Commercial Relevance (POCR) Fund.
Iowa City-based ECR Logic LLC is developing a multi-platform, mobile fieldwork data application that aggregates map data for use in the field by scientists and professionals in specialties ranging from archeology to hydrology - "really anybody who goes out on a landscape, tracks something and reports on it," said UI scientist and co-founder John Doershuk.
The idea is to make remote field work and environmental compliance reporting "easy, fast and accurate" by combining data found in different data sets, from wetlands maps to endangered species surveys, and allowing users to modify that data in the field, he added.
The $25,000 award from the Iowa Economic Development Authority will help the startup hire programmers to build on its core intellectual property, licensed from the UI Office of the State Archaeologist, and pay for additional customer discovery activities. It will also allow ECR to build an advisory board and begin paying its part-time business mentor, Dan Cummins, who has worked with other UI startups including I mmortagen, BioPrint, Infondrian and NaturemiRI.
ECR is targeting customers in the environmental and regulatory fields, from large private consulting firms to the Army Corps of Engineers, and hopes to secure its first sale this summer.
Mr. Doershuk described their company as a "poster-child example of the university trying to enhance entrepreneurship by its faculty and staff, and supporting that by teaching us the ropes," noting that he and fellow founder Mary De La Garza were business "rookies" when they first had the idea for ECR Logic. They went on to participate in the I-Corps Innovation Workshop, a four-week program specifically designed for faculty and staff, and in the UI's Venture School program.
"We're just really excited to be able to follow through on the university's vision of being able to lift something out of an academic application and into the business world, that will hopefully make money for us and the university," Mr. Doershuk said.
GGoogle partnering with Goodwill on digital skills initiatve 
Goodwill of the Heartland has been named as one of 125 Goodwill organizations across the country to provide digital skills training services through a new multi-year initiative with Google.
Goodwill of the Heartland will receive a $50,000 grant to fund its local participation in the Goodwill Digital Career Accelerator. The program will collectively result in more than 1 million people across the United States being trained in skills that will make them more marketable workers for the digital age over the next three years.
"The Goodwill Digital Career Accelerator initiative means we at Goodwill of the Heartland have one more tool to help members of our communities build their skills and expand their career options," said Paulette Risden-Rice, program director for the organization's Quad Cities service area. "There is no question that workers with up-to-date digital skills will be in a better position to advance in today's labor market."
The new training services will likely be focused in the Quad Cities, Muscatine, Burlington and Keokuk areas, according to the organization. Goodwill team members and volunteers at Goodwill's Helms Career Centers, located inside the Muscatine and Moline Goodwill stores, will also help job seekers hone their digital skills. Digital skills include basic computer skills that would be used to establish an email address, apply for a job, perform many entry-level tasks and increase productivity.
To see the full list of participating Goodwill organizations and their geographic areas, visit goodwill.org/dca/.
Para3Pew report: Women in STEM face discrimination

Half of women in science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) fields, and about three-quarters of those who work in computer-related jobs, say they have experienced discrimination at work, according to a new report from the Pew Research Center.
By comparison, only 19 percent of men in STEM fields reported discrimination.
Among minority groups, 62 percent of blacks in STEM jobs reported experiencing discrimination at work, along with 42 percent of Hispanics and 44 percent of Asians. A majority of black survey respondents also agreed with the statement that there is "too little attention to racial and ethnic diversity where they work."
Among women, 29 percent also reported earning less than a man for doing the same STEM job, while the same percentage said they have been treated as incompetent.
"People automatically assume I am the secretary, or in a less technical role because I am female," a 36-year-old respondent said. "This makes it difficult for me to build a technical network to get my work done. People will call on my male co-workers, but not call on me."
The findings come amid heightened public debate about the underrepresentation and treatment of women, as well as racial and ethnic minorities, in the fast-growing tech industry, Pew notes. U.S. Census Bureau data since 1990 shows that STEM jobs have grown substantially, but the share of women working in those jobs has remained at about half over that time. In computer occupations, the STEM job cluster that has seen the most growth in recent decades, women's representation has actually decreased from 32 percent in 1990 to 25 percent today.
See an extended summary of the report here.
Alliant Energy is seeking applications for its 2018 Innovation Scholarships, which will award 25 $1,000 scholarships to college-age students.

To qualify, applicants must be age 24 or younger and a dependent child of a current customer, or current customers themselves, of one of Alliant Energy's utility subsidiaries (Interstate Power and Light or Wisconsin Power and Light).

Award selection is based on the submission of a 300-word essay about an innovative idea to solve a problem within the student's community using science, technology, engineering and/or math. Other selection criteria include participation in a leadership role in community service activities and volunteer work, academic grade point average, and standardized test scores.

Application deadline is February 15. For more information or to apply, visit scholarsapply.org/alliantenergyinnovation.
Para5Prometheus Award nominations now open
Nominations for Iowa's 2018 Prometheus Awards are now being accepted to recognize the state's top innovators and technology leaders.
Presented by the Technology Association of Iowa and LWBJ, the award is "the most prestigious recognition for Iowa's technology industry," according to organizers. The event brings together leaders from technology, business, education and government to celebrate the year's most momentous innovations.

This year features new award categories, including the Manufacturing Technology Company of the Year award recognizing industry leaders developing and deploying hardware or software manufacturing technologies and applications. The Technology Community of the Year was split into two awards this year, one for communities of under 40,000 people and one for communities with more than 40,000 people.
Other award categories include Software Company of the Year, Mobile App of the Year, IT Service Provider of the Year, CEO of the Year and Outstanding Startup Company of the Year.
The nomination period is open through Feb. 2 with winners to be announced at a dinner April 12 at the Community Choice Credit Union Convention Center in Des Moines. Nomination information is available here.
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Short-Term Event Planner
Jan. 24
1 Million Cups , by 1 Million Cups, 9-10 a.m., Geonetric, 415 12th Ave. SE, Cedar Rapids. Join for community connections, startup pitches and free coffee. Free. For more information, visit facebook.com/1MCICR.
Strategies for Business Renewal and Growth in the New Year , by ICAD Group and Kirkwood Community College, 8:30-10:30 a.m., MERGE, 136 S. Dubuque St., Iowa City. Learn about evolution management strategies that can help you adapt to changing conditions and craft a business evolution resolution for 2018. Cost: $25. To register, call (319) 398-1022 or visit kirkwood.edu/ce.
Ribbon Cutting: State Farm/Adam Schechinger Agency , by Iowa City Area Chamber of Commerce, 4 p.m., 3284 Crosspark Road, Coralville. Join the Chamber Ambassadors for this ribbon-cutting. Free.
Jan. 25
Tax Reform Update , by RSM US LLP, 8-11 a.m., The Hotel at Kirkwood Center, 7725 Kirkwood Blvd. SW, Cedar Rapids. RSM's team of local professionals will provide an update on key final provisions in federal tax reform legislation and the possible impact on tax planning. 2.5 CPE credits available. Free. For more information or to register, visit http://bit.ly/2mIfVEF.
Marion State of the City , by city of Marion, 11:30 a.m.-1 p.m., Cedar Rapids Marriott, 1200 Collins Road NE, Cedar Rapids. The Linn County League of Women Voters will host Marion's annual State of the City Luncheon, featuring remarks by Marion Mayor Nicolas AbouAssaly. Cost: $35, or $350 for table of 10. To purchase, visit lwvlinncounty.org.
Realtor and Developer Summit , by Terry Lockridge & Dunn and Pugh Hagan Prahm PLC, 2-4:30 p.m., The Hotel at Kirkwood, 7725 Kirkwood Blvd. SW, Cedar Rapids. This event will cover topics of interest to Realtors and developers, including tax reform impacts, letters of intent, tax credits and a legislative update. Two hours CE will be available for licensed Iowa Realtors. Cost: $15 fee for Realtor CE certificate processing, no cost for non-Realtors. RSVP by Jan. 17 to bshanahan@tld-inc.com.
Business PM: Vintage Cooperatives , by Iowa City Area Chamber of Commerce, 4:30-6:30 p.m., 1180 Kennedy Parkway, Coralville. Join fellow chamber members for networking, appetizers, hors d'oeuvres and more. Free for chamber members. For more information, call (319) 337-9637.
Headlines from CBS2/FOX 28 
These news items are provided by CBS2/FOX 28 
Cedar Rapids police are looking for a 15-year-old boy reported missing Saturday at about 10 p.m. Officers said Damontie Haggstrom-Wells was last seen at 2060 Edgewood Road. A description of his clothing was not available. Haggstroom-Wells was the subject of an Operation Quickfind last week. Anyone with information about his whereabouts should call Cedar Rapids Police at (319) 286-5491.

Iowa City and University of Iowa Police are investigating two sexual assault incidents that happened early Saturday morning. The first incident happened around 2 a.m. Saturday. A female student told officers a man offered to give her a ride back to her residence hall from the downtown area, but after she got into his vehicle, he drove her off campus to sexually assault her. He then drove her home. Then at 3:30 a.m., a woman reported a man between the ages of 21 and 25 approached her near Clinton and Court Streets, and attempted to sexually assault her. The suspect in the second incident is described as a black male approximately 21 to 25 years of age, 5'9 to 5'10 in height, with a buzz cut wearing a black or navy North Face jacket. If you have any information, please contact ICPD at (319) 356-5275.
T hese news items are provided by CBS2/FOX 28 
CBS2 Chief Meteorologist Terry Swails' Weather First Forecast
Colder air has moved in and will lead to slick streets and sidewalks through the day - especially areas that are not treated. It will be cool and windy today. Clouds will clear gradually into the afternoon and temperatures will just rise into the low 30s. Winds will kick around 15-25 mph through the day and make it feel 10-15 degrees colder than the actual temperature. There will be a few flurries tonight with clouds in overhead. Temperatures will drop down to near 20 by morning. Temperatures will be cool on Wednesday, but warmer than today, climbing into the mid 30s. Temperatures will continue to climb up as we head into the end of the week.