SVTC Banner
The Shenandoah Valley Connectiontop 
December 18, 2020
Click Any Link Below to Jump to Article
Virginia Technology Councils' 2021 Policy Agenda
Center Street Pitch Competition (application deadline 1/15)
Winter 2021 College for Kids | Harrisonburg (February)
SVTC Offering Start-Up Grants for FIRST LEGO League Teams
Welcome Back Level III Member: Serco Inc.
Shenandoah Valley Open Tech Jobs
Rocktown Tech Slack Channel Link
The Virginia Technology Councils' 2021 Policy Agenda is a collaborative summary statement created by the tech councils in Virginia in December 2020

Education & Workforce Development
In order for Virginia's businesses to grow and thrive, they need well-trained and highly skilled employees. In the technology industry, Virginia continues to experience a shortage of trained workers.  Virginia's Tech Councils support the following efforts to increase our workforce:
  • Funding for G3: 'Get Skilled, Get a Job, Give Back'
    • G3 will make tuition-free community college available to low- and middle-income students who pursue jobs in high-demand fields such as information technology. It will provide financial support to cover tuition, fees, and books for eligible students at the Commonwealth's two-year public institutions, as well as wraparound assistance for students at the lowest income levels.
  • Funding for Fast Forward
    • FastForward is a short-term workforce training program through the Virginia Community College System (VCCS) to train Virginians for industry credentials and certifications for the most in-demand jobs across the Commonwealth.
  • Funding for the Virginia Economic Development Partnership (VEDP) Talent Accelerator Program and Virginia Jobs Investment Program
    • Additional funding for two worker training programs at VEDP was unallotted during the 2020 session. Over the last five fiscal years, Virginia Jobs Investment Program (VJIP) has assisted nearly 75 companies in the technology industry, creating over 13,000 jobs and almost $300 million in capital investment. The Virginia Talent Accelerator Program, launched in 2019, accelerates new facility start-ups through the direct delivery of recruitment and training services that are fully customized to a company's unique products, processes, equipment, standards, and culture.
  • State Review of Implementation of Computer Science Education
    • A comprehensive review of the ongoing implementation of mandatory computer science standards as well as alignment of course pathways, including implementation best practices and opportunities for enhanced collaboration with stakeholders.
IT Procurement
The Commonwealth is home to a vibrant industry of technology companies employing thousands of Virginians. Many of these technology companies offer high-value, innovative solutions increasing access to and improving the efficiency of our state government. Virginia's Tech Councils support
  • Policies to ensure that the Commonwealth's procurement process is open, transparent and promote a culture of creativity and competition.
  • In these uncertain times, use available resources to fund much needed one-time expenses including procuring upgrades to several long-deferred information technology systems and modernizing public agencies and networks to better communicate and adapt to a rapidly changing work environment.
  • Keeping burdensome taxes and regulations to a minimum, especially as additional costs ultimately get passed back to the Commonwealth in the form of higher priced procurement.
Innovation and Economic Development
Virginia has made great strides in laying the foundation for long term growth of our technology industry including restructuring our state level programs and creating the Virginia Innovation Partnership Authority (VIPA).  Additionally, significant investments in education and workforce development continue to increase our potential for growth.  Virginia's Tech Councils support the following efforts to strengthen our efforts to grow and recruit Virginia-based IT businesses:
  • Increase funding for the Virginia Innovation Partnership Authority
    • The VIPA Regional Investment Fund was established through legislation but not funded during the 2020 session. This program will help businesses grow and thrive by building critical ecosystems in all regions of the Commonwealth and provide support in areas where programs like GO Virginia are unable to help.
  • Increase flexibility for GO Virginia and VEDP Grants for businesses implementing remote work
    • Additional flexibility is needed for businesses seeking existing economic development grants and assistance, but whose capital investment is limited due to significant remote work. Allowing more flexibility in a rapidly changing office environment would increase our ability to grow businesses and create jobs in changing business models across Virginia.
  • Expand and Diversify Key Technology Sectors
    • The Commonwealth is home to several key existing and emerging technologies and our agencies and resources should be utilized to help these sectors expand and diversify. In recent years, policymakers have worked diligently to support many of these areas including Unmanned Systems (land, sea, air), Cybersecurity, Smart Communities, Extended/Virtual/Augmented Reality, Biomedical, and Renewable Energy Technologies.
  • Data Centers
    • Support maintaining Virginia's competitive position as a global leader in the data center market by protecting the existing data center investment incentives. As our communities rely more heavily on work from home and virtual education, these data centers are what make it all possible.
Broadband Access
Universal access to affordable broadband is essential to every Virginian in order to compete in today's global economy, and the COVID-19 pandemic has made high-speed internet even more critical.  Virginia's Tech Councils support ongoing efforts to fund broadband deployment in all corners of the Commonwealth and reduce red tape and barriers that make deployment more difficult.
Brought to you by:


Each year, the Dominion Energy Innovation Center (DEIC) and Randolph-Macon College (R-MC) welcome emerging technology and sustainability-focused startups across Virginia to apply for its Pitch Competition.

DEIC has been an outlet for entrepreneurial activity and green technologies for over a decade. Randolph-Macon College, located on Ashland's Center Street, has been part of the town's fabric since 1830. Divided only by the historic train tracks that run through the center of town, DEIC and R-MC are natural partners. This pitch competition is an opportunity for DEIC to recognize promising startups across Virginia, as well as R-MC's growing commitment to providing entrepreneurial education and resources for their student body.

The Center Street pitch competition will feature six Virginia companies in varying stages of growth going after two prizes worth a combined $15,000, and a free one-year membership to the DEIC. The winner in each category, sustainability-focused and general/high-growth, will also receive a comprehensive branding package courtesy of Fireside Digital and BROWNBAYLOR™. The finalists selected will be given 5 minutes to pitch in front of a panel of judges, followed by live Q&A. Also participating will be three student teams representing R-MC, who will pitch for a separate $5,000 cash prize and co-working space at DEIC.

The competition will take place virtually on Thursday, February 25th, 2021

(app. deadline January 15, 2021)


February 6-27, 2021 (Saturdays) | 9 am - 12 noon
Memorial Hall, James Madison University

College for Kids provides an enriching, educational, and fun experience for children in grades 1st-8th. Children work with JMU faculty and students, as well as experts from the community, to explore and discover talents they never knew they had!

Winter 2021 College for Kids will take place on Saturdays from February 6th - 27th. This program will be held in person. Your child's safety is our greatest priority, therefore all children will be required to wear a mask, and we will be practicing guidelines in keeping with CDC recommendations. See safety protocol here.

Course options include, but not limited to: 
  • Learning to Be a Mad Scientist (1st - 4th Grades)Science is a whole world of curiosity.  In this class, we will learn all about the science that is in our world around us.  We will have fun getting to be hands-on and experimenting with science.
  • Lego Engineering (1st - 4th Grades) - This class is for young Lego enthusiasts who are ready to delve into the world of engineering and computer coding.   Each week, students will be presented with a different LEGO Engineering challenge designed to spark their creativity and put their technical problem solving skills to work.  Participants will also get to work in teams to build and program Lego robots using the We-Do Lego curriculum.
  • Instrument Construction Projects (6th - 8th Grades) Have you ever wanted to make your own musical instrument? Get your hands ready to create a rainstick, thunder tube, didgeridoo, and more! Learn how different materials create unique sounds. Construct musical projects to take home and perform. We will even add some technology to a lesson to see how computers and technology can make everyday objects become musically alive!


Looking for a grant to help start up your FLL team? Each year, the Shenandoah Valley Technology Council sponsors up to three new FIRST LEGO League (FLL) teams from the Shenandoah Valley. Approximately half of the start-up cost of a new team is reimbursed, up to $350.

To be eligible, teams must be located in the footprint of the Shenandoah Valley Technology Council's area of operation. Applicants must also intend participate in the FLL competition within one year of receiving the grant. This grant can be used towards any equipment required for competition in FIRST LEGO League, including one or more LEGO robotics kits, a competition practice table, and an FLL field setup kit.

If you are interested in applying for the FLL Start-Up Grant, start on our FLL page and fill out, and send, the PDF linked on that page. Information and application for FLL Startup Grant

About FIRST LEGO League (FLL),
FLL was created through a partnership between FIRST (For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology) and the LEGO company and inspires future scientists and engineers. it is an international competition that challenges young participants to think like scientists and engineers. Every year FLL introduces kids to a real-world scientific topic, and teams are challenged to find a solution. They also build a robot and compete in a friendly, FIRST-style robotics event specially designed for their age group.

This year's challenge, called Replay:
FIRST LEGO League Challenge RePLAY - Season Launch Video
FIRST LEGO League Challenge RePLAY | Season Launch Video

About the local / Virginia league: Your state and local -Virginia and Shen. Valley- connection to FLL is VA-DC FLL (, located in Harrisonburg. Virginia is one of the largest leagues in the world with over 600 teams. Start a conversation with Kaitlin and crew and see how you can get involved, right here in the Shen. Valley. (
Science and technology leaders are made, not born.


Welcome Back Level III Member!
Serco Inc.

Serco Inc. is the North American division of Serco Group, plc, one of the world's leading service companies. Serco serves Federal, state and local governments, along with the Canadian government and commercial customers. We help our customers deliver vital services more efficiently, while increasing the satisfaction of their clients. Serco brings deep domain expertise and proven processes informed by over 50 years' experience, with over 40,000 people in 35 countries across the world, and 8,000 in the Americas. Serco professionals advise our customers, as well as design, integrate and deliver solutions that transform how clients achieve their mission and transform government efficiency. We help tackle the big, complex problems of our interconnected world in the areas of defense, citizen services and transportation. Serco's clients come to us with confidence that we have the expertise to take service delivery to the next level of performance. We know how to make services run smoother, smarter and more efficiently. We help transform the experience of the end customers in a positive and sustainable way. Our presence in the Shenandoah Valley includes the USPTO Classification Services contracts as well as support and management services for numerous additional Serco programs.

  • IT Network Administrator, Harrisonburg Community Health Center
  • Assistant Director, 4-VA | Harrisonburg
  • Solder Technician, VIRTEX | Waynesboro
  • IT Operations Technician, Segra | Waynesboro
  • Systems Analyst/Developer, Augusta County Service Authority | Verona
Participate in the local tech conversation: Rocktown Tech (Slack)

Currently there are 18 channels and over 450 members. Sign-up

Membership Badge Available 
Use our new graphic on your own website (and remember to link back to our website www.!) 

Choose the graphic file of your choice:

Let us know when you incorporate this graphic and we'll mention your site in return!

See how our Level I Members grep Innovation, LLC displayed our membership badge on their website!

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.

View our profile on LinkedIn

Follow us on Twitter 


Like us on Facebook  

Silver Level Member

Level III Members




Serco logo

Sproutly logo

WAW Logo

>> Ready to become a member, too?  

Membership Benefits
& Prices


>> How have you benefited from participating in our activities and/ or from membership? Tell us!   




Contact Us 

Shenandoah Valley Technology Council
800 S. Main Street MSC 3615
Harrisonburg, Virginia 22807



Join Our Mailing List!