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August 30, 2 019
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BRCC Seeking Employer Partnerships to Offer Tech Internships
CRCF FY2020 Solicitation: Take a Sneak Peek at the Upcoming Round
JMU College of Integrated Science & Engineering / College of Science & Math Open House (8/30)
For Those Interested in Accelerators & Maker Spaces Outside of the Shen. Valley: RAMP Demo Day (9/9)
SVTC Luncheon | Building Useful Conversational Software (9/12)
SVTC's Fall Tech Mixer | Registration OPEN (9/24)
Valley TechCon.19 | Early Bird Registration OPEN (9/25)
Innovate | Shenandoah: Strategic Doing Day (10/30)
Welcome New SVTC Member: Tonya Coffey
BRCC Seeks Employer Partnerships to
Offer Tech Internships

Blue Ridge Community College is currently seeking employer partnerships to offer technology internships to students in the A.A.S. Information Systems Technology Degree programs. Below, Lorie Hartt, Assistant Professor of Information Systems Technology, describes these programs and the sort of internships BRCC is seeking: 

"The Blue Ridge Community College A.A.S. Information Systems Technology Degree programs require students to complete an internship course.  This course is designed to give students on-site work experience with local employers.  BRCC offers the internship course during all semesters-spring, summer, and fall.  However, the course is typically completed during the student's last semester of their program.  This program design allows the student to bring as much of their education to the workplace as possible.  In addition to this on-site experience, we continue to prepare the student for the workforce through a variety of career readiness assignments and on campus experiences. 

We at BRCC, feel that this on-site experience is essential in assisting the student in combining their classroom experience with the real world workforce demands.  Over the years, we have partnered with many great organizations and companies throughout the Shenandoah Valley to offer these opportunities and we value these partnerships! Thus, in an effort to better serve our students in the Harrisonburg/Rockingham County area we are currently seeking employer partnerships to offer internships. 

If you have partnered with us in the past and would like to reconnect, or if you would like to learn more about our IST internship course, I would welcome to the opportunity to meet with you in person or over the phone.  I can be reached via email at or phone at 540.453.2244.

Warm regards,

Lorie Hartt
Assistant Professor
Information Systems Technology
IST & CS Department Coordinator"

CRCF FY2020 Solicitation:
Take a Sneak Peek at the Upcoming Round
Are you commercializing an early-stage, high-potential technology in Virginia?
CRCF may be for you!

CIT is excited to preview the Commonwealth Research Commercialization Fund (CRCF) FY2020 solicitation. Approximately $2.5 million is available to award to Virginia's private sector, higher education, federal research facilities, and other research organizations through five programs: Commercialization, SBIR Matching Funds, STTR Matching Funds, Matching Funds, and Eminent Researcher Recruitment. Award caps range from $75,000 to $250,000.

CRCF accelerates innovation and drives economic growth in Virginia by advancing solutions to important state, national, and global problems through technology research, development, and commercialization.

CRCF will invite technology development projects in five targeted industries:
  • Clean energy
  • Cyber security
  • Data analytics
  • Life sciences
  • Unmanned systems
Visit  for high-level program information, including eligibility criteria for organizations and qualified technologies, key submission dates, and upcoming briefings. Be on the lookout for information on the Letter of Intent (LOI) in late August, followed by the RFP in late September. Program-specific guidelines and other application resources, including webinars will be available with the RFP. A curated list of  FAQs  is available now. The CRCF team can be reached at and will begin fielding questions about the round with the release of LOI details.

JMU College of Integrated Science & Engineering/
College of Science & Mathematics Open House (8/30)

August 30, 2019 | 2 pm - 4 pm
iSAT/CS and En/Geo Buildings, JMU, Harrisonburg
Please park in the D-2 lot -- no parking passes needed.

JMU's East Campus has recently completed 3 summers of renovation and they are having an  Open   House  to show off the new facilities for Computer Science, Engineering, Geology and Environmental Science and the School of Integrated Sciences. Come see state-of-the-art classrooms and labs and interact with students and faculty.  The new spaces include Maker Spaces and Fabrications labs, the Madison Academic Brewery, collaborative spaces for Computer Science, Environmental Science and Geology labs and much more.

For those interested in checking on the accelerators and maker spaces outside of the Shen. Valley region, take a trip to Roanoke: RAMP Demo Day (9/9)
September 9, 2019 | 5:00 pm
Whitman Hall Auditorium, VWCC, Roanoke
Three years ago, the Roanoke-Blacksburg region made a commitment to support technology startups in such a way as to accelerate their growth. Your encouragement and contributions have made it possible.

The journey for these six companies is just getting started, but this milestone is significant.

Join us for our third annual Demo Day on Monday, September 9th. This event is designed to showcase the 2019 RAMP cohort companies.

September 12, 2019 | 11:45 am - 1:00 pm
Wood Grill Buffet, Harrisonburg

It's easy to build a bot; it's hard to build a useful bot. Chatbots have been circulating the buzzword bins for the last two years, and a day doesn't go by where you don't hear about some new chatbot being launched to support customers or processes. Now, look at your phone. How many chatbots are you using? Go ahead. I'll wait. With chatbots, you can easily build a novelty, but without a clear plan and intuitive design, you might build something that works, but that nobody wants to use. For this luncheon, we'll discuss what it takes to build a useful and compelling chatbot, as well as how to design and prototype bots before you build them. We will then go over a "useful" chatbot application, and how it was built from end-to-end

About the Speaker
Michael Szul has spent two decades in software engineering in industries as diverse as insurance, energy, travel, and higher education, including consulting with companies such as AIG and Conde Naste. He has worked in both application and product development, as well as framework creation, code generation, API building, and machine learning. Szul is a speaker, blogger, podcaster, Microsoft MVP in AI and Developer Technologies, and author of Building Chatbots in TypeScript with the Microsoft Bot Framework. Currently, he is the manager of undergraduate medical education applications for the  University of Virginia's Health System.

Thank you luncheon sponsors:

September 24, 2019 | 5:30 pm - 7:30 pm
Beyond Restaurant, Harrisonburg

Join the Shenandoah Valley Technology Council on September 24th for our annual Fall Tech Mixer. Hosted by the SVTC's Board of Directors, this is our fall networking event.

Come and find out what the SVTC is doing as an organization, and what our members are doing individually. This is our second biggest event of the year (only Tech Nite is bigger). This is where the growing technology community goes in the fall to catch up. SVTC members are corporate leaders, entrepreneurs, educators, coders, programmers and more. Membership is not required to participate in the Fall Tech Mixer nor many SVTC events. Feel free to invite a co-worker, customer, friend or spouse (please register each).

Come out and join current and potential members as they mingle and network. Appetizers are 'on us'! Drinks are Dutch treat.

ValleyTechCon19 | Early Bird Registration (9/25)
September 25, 2019 | 7:30 am - 4:00 pm
Hotel Madison & Shenandoah Valley Conference Center

** Early Bird Tickets (ends 8/31): $100 (+ $7.72 fee)  **
Regular Admission: $125 (+ $9.24 fee)
Student Rate: $50 (+4.67 fee)

Now in its second year, Valley TechCon brings together technology enthusiasts, practitioners, researchers, and business leaders to facilitate idea sharing, collaboration, and innovation. This year there will be three tracks to choose from for the breakout sessions: Technical Topics for Practitioners, The Business Impact of Technology, and Growing Your Technology Business. Within each track,  sessions will cover a broad spectrum of topics. The goal is to inspire new ideas, improve business efficiency with emerging technologies, springboard new ventures, and expand networking opportunities.

Check out all that Valley TechCon.19 has to offer this year!
Ticket Includes
  • Breakfast, morning snack, lunch.
  • 14 breakout sessions.
  • 3 featured speaker sessions.
  • Post-event networking event at Pale Fire Brewing Company (shuttle and first drink included)*.

Are there ID or minimum age requirements to enter the event?
Individuals of all ages are encouraged to attend, from high school age upwards, through college years, those in a professional career, and those looking to keep up to date in retirement.

What are my transportation/parking options for getting to and from the event?
Hotel Madison & Shenandoah Valley Conference Center is conveniently located close to exit 245 on Interstate 81 at 710 S. Main St., Harrisonburg VA, 22801.  Directions. Once you arrive, you will find a multi-storey parking deck towards the rear of the hotel. The entrance is located on Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd. (Historical Cantrell Ave.). Valet parking is also available.

How can I contact the organizer with any questions?
Contact via email

What's the refund policy?
Refunds can be requested up until 7 days before the event.

*After conference networking session occurs 3:30-5:30 PM at Pale Fire Brewery in downtown Harrisonburg; one beer ticket per non-student conference attendee

October 24, 2019 | 11:45 am - 1:00 pm
Wood Grill Buffet, Harrisonburg 

This presentation will focus on understanding the 3 different types of strategic disciplines.  What are their differences and how businesses often gravitate to one not realizing the others are blind spots?  How to build a strategy that leverages all 3 and how to do that to build a better organization.  An ideal topic for business leaders looking to take their business to the next level or understand how to pivot from stagnate/declining revenue.

About the Speaker
David Deaton, founder of Deaton Group, LLC, has over two decades of experience transforming organizations through strategic planning, market research, and effective execution.  David has partnered with organizations worldwide ranging from startups and nonprofits to global businesses to improve growth, manage change and transformation, and develop strong strategic foundations to build and sustain their success.  As the former Director of Strategy and Market Research for the CFA Institute Asia Pacific region, David has extensive experience in both qualitative and quantitative market analysis. He then went on to become Global Strategic Planning Director where he developed organizational strategy and departmental alignment, guided new teams and projects through effective launches, helped teams plan for implementation, and provided group facilitation for departmental strategic planning.  We know that organizations can overcome their toughest obstacles and reach new levels of success through sound strategy. We're here to make that happen.

Register for October 24, 2019 SVTC Luncheon

October 29, 2019 | 11:45 am - 1:00 pm
Wood Grill Buffet, Harrisonburg

Gathering women "in tech" on October 29 for an informal gathering from around the Valley to connect, network, and share ideas. This is a first meeting to get acquainted  - let's see what, if anything, we want to do. From students to professionals, we welcome all those who identify as women or girls interested in or associated with technology.

Take a look at an organization in Charlottesville, Charlottesville Women in Tech (, we are keeping them in mind as we start a conversation among women who are in tech, in the Valley. As always, that's anywhere on the range from tech user to tech creator. Elaine Cheng, Chief Information Officer, Shentel and Nicky Swayne, CEO, Shen. Valley Technology Council will facilitate the meeting.

Please pre-register to attend so that we can bring pre-printed nametags for attendees.

Teams meet October 30, 2019 | 9am - 5pm
Innovate | Shenandoah in an initiative sponsored by SCCF and the VA Department of Housing and Community Development. They are hosting a Strategic Doing Day. What is Strategic Doing? Strategic Doing is a framework developed by Purdue University that helps loosely connected groups, collaborate quickly and effectively. Communities within the Shenandoah Valley are invited to build teams that will work through the Strategic Doing Process to develop projects that highlight entrepreneurship and economic vibrancy in your community. 

More information about Strategic Doing:

Want to be a part of a team from your area? Complete the form in the link below and you will get you connected to the appropriate organizer within your region. Please note, some teams may already be full.

Register for the October 30, 2019 Strategic Doing Day
and you will be connected within your region

Welcome New SVTC Member!
Tonya Coffey

Tonya Coffey is currently an ITRT for Augusta County Public Schools. She is a certified G Suite for Education Trainer (2016) and frequently presents at workshops sharing her Google knowledge. For the past five years, she has been invited to JMU to present to future teachers on how to use and integrate G Suite for Educations apps in the classroom. She has also presented at VSTE, VSRA, Brainstorm, JMU Kappa Delta Pi, VMI STEM Conference and, Children's Engineering Conference (pending February 2020) and has a passion for all things technology. She is a doctoral candidate at Liberty University in Curriculum and Instruction with an endorsement in School Administration. Mrs. Coffey also works with CodeVA to teach K-5 teachers all about Computer Science and how to seamlessly integrate into their instruction. Her favorite CS lesson is to use BEE BOTs in grades PreK-5 to teach not only coding but also content.

  • Western State Hospital, Staunton (Programmer)
  • Sproutly, New Market (UX Designer)
  • Blue Ridge Community College, Weyers Cave (Computer Programming Boot
    Camp Instructor)
  • Ryzing Technologies, Staunton (Engineering Technician)
  • Vision Technology Group, Harrisonburg (Tier III Network Engineer)
  • Budget Referee, Harrisonburg (Full Stack Developer with front end web development focus)
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The Shenandoah Valley Technology Council does not endorse the companies, organizations, teams, or events mentioned, or take a stand on any of the articles or notices or events included.

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