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The Shenandoah Valley Connection top 
November 17, 2017
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Spark Tank Business Accelerator Giveaway (sign up by 11/22)
Maker Workshop - Holiday Lanterns (11/25)
VA/DC FIRST LEGO League Championship Tournament (12/2 - 12/3)
Commonwealth STEM Industry Internship Program (Dec 5)
SVTC & HRCC | Legislative Pre-Session Breakfast (12/6)
Invest Local Meet & Greet (12/7)
D.I.G.I.T.A.L. - Computer Science Workshop for Middle and High School Girls - Free (12/9)
Virginia ICAP's Lean Launchpad Short Course...Shenandoah Valley Cohort (application due 12/15)
For High Schoolers | Saturday Morning Physics (1/13 - 2/10)
College for Kids | Grades 1st - 8th (1/13 - 2/17)
Job Opening | Software Engineer, Jenzabar
Job Opening | Web Developer, James Madison University IT
Job Opening | Director of Information Technology, Lexington City Schools
Job Opening | Director of Information Technology, Lexington City Schools
Rocktown Tech Slack Channel Link
Spark Tank Business Accelerator Giveaway
(sign up ends by 11/22)

 Applications are being accepted!
Voting begins November 22, 2017

As a way to give back to the community, the Spark Tank contest intends to help a local business transform and accelerate! The winner will receive a custom website, professionally written content, a professional photo shoot, a 30-second commercial, a premier car wrap, marketing strategy plan development, and an executive branding kit!

Competition timeline:
VOTING PERIOD: Wednesday, November 22nd - Wednesday, December 6th
The images and story you provided about your business will post to the   Valley Inbound Marketing   Facebook page. The public will vote for your business by "liking" your business post. Your goal is to get as many people to vote on your post as possible! 

6 Finalists  will be chosen based on who has the most likes on the post for their business.  2 Wildcard Finalists will be chosen based on the compelling nature of their story submitted during the application process.

FINALISTS ANNOUNCED: Thursday, December 8th
All 8 finalists will be announced this day in a unique top-secret (for now) way! This is when you'll get the complete rules and guidelines for the January 13th Spark Tank presentations.

SPARK TANK LIVE SHOW: Saturday, January 13th, 9am-6pm
This is   THE DAY!   Be prepared to commit the entire day to this event. For the live portion of the show, you'll come prepared to show what you've got in a Shark Tank style presentation, complete with 5 judges and Q&A from the audience.  

The  2018 SPARK TANK WINNER  will be selected by the judges and announced at the end of the competition!

For more information, visit

Explore More Maker Workshop: Holiday Lanterns (11/25)

November 25, 2017 | 10 am - 12 pm
Explore More Discovery Museum | Members: $8 / Visitors: $12

Create a holiday lantern using the laser cutter, LED lights and other Maker City materials! Experiment with principles of art and design while engineering a work of art.

Intended for youth ages 8 and up. Advance Registration and workshop materials fee required.  Members: $8 / Visitors: $12.

VA/DC FIRST LEGO League | State Championship Tournament (Harrisonburg,12/2 -12/3)

 Dec. 2, 2017 at JMU Memorial Hall | 7:45 am - 6 pm
Dec. 3, 2017 at Harrisonburg High School | 7:30 am - 6 pm
** Open to the Public ** 

Volunteer for FLL!
Volunteers are currently sought after for both Dec. 2nd and 3rd! For the safety of participants, volunteers are required to become familiar with the Youth Protection Program (YPP) and complete background screening through the FLL Volunteer Registration.
If you are unable to volunteer, you can still come to the gargantuan and very busy FIRST LEGO League (FLL) state tournament. Exc itement, robotics, and LEGOS! Most importantly, come support the students who have worked hard and see what they've accomplished! 

What does all this FLL stuff look like? Watch this team from S. Korea in last year's challenge, at "World Fest", spring 2017, which is where many of the state-level winners go to compete.)

Bring your kids to the Dec 3 (Sunday) competition at Harrisonburg High School to see them compete in this year's challenge: Hydrodynamics 

2017 Challenge: Hydrodynamics
Drink in the 2017/2018 HYDRO DYNAMICSSM season and learn all about water - how we find, transport, use, or dispose of it. In the 2017/18 FIRST® LEGO® League Challenge, students age 9 to 16 from 80 countries will make a splash with HYDRO DYNAMICS. What might become possible when we understand what happens to our water?

FIRST® LEGO® League challenges kids to think like scientists and engineers. During the HYDRO DYNAMICSSM season, teams will choose and solve a real-world problem in the Project. They will also build, test, and program an autonomous robot using LEGO® MINDSTORMS® technology to solve a set of missions in the Robot Game. Throughout their experience, teams will operate under the FIRST LEGO League signature set of Core Values, celebrating discovery, teamwork, and Gracious Professionalism®

For more information and full schedule, visit

Commonwealth STEM Industry Internship Program
Business Symposium (12/5)

 December 5, 2017 | 9 - 11 am
Peninsula Workforce Development Center 

At the Business Symposium, you will hear about how the program links undergraduate science, technology, engineering & math (STEM) students to industry and employers.
Register for Dec. 5, 2017 symposium


December 6, 2017 | 7:30 - 9:30 am
JMU Festival and Conference Center
$15 for Members | $20 for Non-Members

Save the date for the Legislative Pre-Session! This breakfast is a time that we listen to and engage with our area legislators about issues affecting business in Harrisonburg and Rockingham County. 

The Shenandoah Valley Technology Council and the Harrisonburg-Rockingham Chamber of Commerce together host the Annual Pre-Session Legislative Breakfast at JMU Festival and Conference Center. This is a time that we listen to and engage with our area legislators about issues affecting business in Harrisonburg and Rockingham County.


Do you have a passion for a project that needs funding? Are you looking for a way to get more local dollars into the community? Are you interested in changing the way money flows into our neighborhoods?  Join us for an evening for drinks, hors d'oeuvres, and new friendships as the Staunton Creative Community Fund (SCCF) brings together the faces of the Invest Local Project: makers, entrepreneurs, investors and supporters.

SCCF is building the networks for a thriving local economy and opening opportunities for local investing.


December 9, 2017 | 8:30 am- 2:30 pm | JMU ISAT/CS Building

Hosted by JMU Outreach and Engagement, come join us this year for this free one-day event. It will be offered for middle school AND high school-aged girls interested in technology. DIGITAL is designed to inspire girls to break limits and explore technology through hands-on activities led by female JMU students.

Registration is free, and will be updated and open soon! Breakfast and lunch will be provided. 

Questions? Contact Melissa Heatwole at or (540) 568-4226

Register for Dec. 9, 2017 workshop

Virginia ICAP's Lean Launchpad Short Course
Shenandoah Valley Cohort (apps. due by 12/15)
Business Model Development for Technology Start-Ups

ICAP is a statewide technology-commercialization program offered by the Virginia Network of Small Business Development Centers, George Mason University, and local sponsors.

Based on the National Science Foundation's I-Corps™ program for Lean Startups, ICAP 2.0 helps inventors and entrepreneurs take the right first steps in bringing new technologies and innovations to market.

During this FREE 3-week program, you will work with ICAP instructors and your teammates to learn techniques that will help you identify potential customers, learn their needs and how you can build a successful business model from that knowledge.

The Short Course is the beginning of an ICAP process that guides companies through the Five Steps to Startup Success:
  • Validate your business model
  • Build the right team of three or more members
  • Develop a minimum viable product (MVP)
  • Create early sales traction
  • Establish distribution channels and key partnerships
Who is Eligible?
All Virginia early-stage technology innovators and entrepreneurs (faculty, students, or the community at large) who are seeking to explore the commercial prospects for their innovations are encouraged to participate in this regional cohort.  

Important Dates
December 15, 2017 - Applications due by midnight
December 22, 2017 - Acceptance notifications and communication from Bob Smith, a seasoned advisor, with next steps and instructions, including how to prepare for the first session. 
January 26, 2018, 9:00am-3:00pm - Kick-off Classroom Introductory Session.  We meet in JMU's Lakeview Hall, Harrisonburg. ( Location | Google Maps)
February 2, 2018 - Each team participates in a pre-scheduled telephone review of the team's Customer Discovery Progress over the first week
February 9, 2018, 9:00am-Noon - Final Team Presentations at JMU's Lakeview Hall
  • During this 3-week program, there is extensive work done outside the classroom. In addition to the two class meetings, participants should expect to spend another 10-15 hours per week on customer discovery and course assignments.
  • At the conclusion of the program, you will remain connected with your ICAP trainers and SBDC Business Advisors to continue your progress on the Five Steps to Startup Success.
The program is designed to generate a maximum impact over a relatively short duration, and should be considered a required first step for anyone interested in commercializing a technology or product, whether through a startup or licensing arrangement. 

Some graduates of this cohort may be eligible to apply to NSF's full National Seven-week I-Corps Program in which includes non-dilutive grants for customer discovery and prototype development. Additionally, this program can help teams develop better submissions for SBIRs and CRCF grants from Virginia's Center for Innovative Technologies. 

For more information email:  


January 13 - February 10, 2018
9 am - 12 pm | JMU Physics/Chem Building

Check out Saturday Morning Physics, a fun and informative way to start your weekend!

Come and explore the fascinating properties of waves as scientists use them in music, nanotechnology, astronomy, and nuclear physics. JMU Physics and Astronomy presents this educational event series designed for high school students and teachers! Juniors and seniors who participate are eligible for one JMU Physics credit. Held over the Saturdays on the JMU campus, we invite you to explore, learn, and have fun!

Note that only 50 seats are available! For more information, contact Melissa Heatwole at or (540) 568-4226.

Also see

   | Grades 1st - 8th (1/13 - 2/17)

January 13 - February 17, 2018 | 9 am - 12 pm
$135.00 covers all 6 Saturdays

College for Kids is an enrichment program for children in grades 1-8. Children will work with James Madison University faculty and graduate students, as well as experts from the community and surrounding area, to try new things, explore and discover talents they never knew they had! College for Kids is being held this year on Saturday, January 13 - February 17, 2018 from 9-12pm. 

Registration fee of $135.00 covers all 6 Saturdays
For more information, please contact Melissa Heatwole at or (540) 568-4226


Job Opening: Software Engineer

Jenzabar is looking for a talented and experienced Software Engineer to join our team of passionate people in designing and developing a high quality, end user focused administrative web application for higher education. This individual should be highly proficient with HTML5, CSS3, JavaScript/jQuery and have a passion for web development as well as a keen eye for well-designed UX and UI. The Software Engineer should have solid experience with Responsive Web Design techniques to build interfaces which will adapt to the many devices in which our end users will use to access our application. Solid experience with developing .Net MVC web applications and the .Net framework is highly preferred. If you enjoy working in a team environment to develop an application that will not just let users do their work but help them do their work, then please consider joining the Jenzabar team.

Job Opening: Web Developer
James Madison University IT| Harrisonburg

James Madison University ( JMU ) is currently recruiting for a creative, self-motivated Web Developer to help support JMU's current web infrastructure. This position will support end user publishing to university web servers using the  JMU  Content Management System (Cascade Server) and also some development of miscellaneous web applications that support the main university website.

More information at JMU Joblink

Job Opening: Assistant or Associate Professor of Data Science
JMU Co llege of Integrated Science and Engineering| Harrisonburg

The Department of Integrated Science and Technology ( ISAT ) at James Madison University ( JMU ) invites applications for a tenure-track position at the rank of Assistant or Associate Professor beginning August, 2018. The Department of Integrated Science and Technology (soon to become the School of Integrated Sciences) is a dynamic, highly interdisciplinary academic unit of 50 faculty with terminal degrees in 39 different fields. Our graduates are innovative problem solvers with strong analytical and teaming skills that enable them to work on complex socio-technical problems facing organizations, communities, and society. Additional information on the department and its individual programs can be found at

Job Opening: 
Director of Information Technology 

Lexington City Schools | Lexington

The Director of Information Technology is responsible for the design, implementation, and ongoing maintenance of all server, network, and computing technology for Lexington City Schools and the City of Lexington. This position also assists with networking and server support at the Rockbridge ECC. The position reports to the Superintendent of Lexington City Schools and the City Manager. Given oversight of the city's varied technology infrastructure, the Director of Information Technology must be self - driven, organized, and possess a keen attention to detail. As primary support for faculty, staff, and students, the Director of Information Technology must also be collaborative and committed to customer service. 

Job Opening: 
Senior Systems Developer
Remote (Anywhere in the US)

The Systems team at Treehouse helps plan, build, document, and maintain the services and underlying technical infrastructure of the Treehouse website. We run on OpenStack and codify our infrastructure with Ruby and Chef. We run applications on all major operating systems.
In addition to performing the duties of a Systems Developer, the Senior Systems Developer provides the team with technical support and leadership.
More information at

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



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