SVTC Banner
The Shenandoah Valley Connection top 
November 16,  2018
Click Any Link Below to Jump to Article
RESCHEDULED SVTC Luncheon | Deep Neural Networks: How They Work and When They Don't (11/29)
Cadence and Valley Career & Technical Center Join Forces to Invest in the Future of Manufacturing
Strategic Doing Initiative Webinar (11/19)
Volunteers Needed! FIRST LEGO League State Competition (12/1 - 12/2)
2018 Legislative Pre-Session Breakfast (12/5)
JMU X-Labs Innovation Summit (12/7)
eCYBERMISSION | For 6th - 9th Grade Students (registration deadline 12/19)
Cybersecurity Basics for Managers (1/7-1/17)
College for Kids for Grades 1st - 8th (1/12 - 2/16)
Saturday Morning Physics for High School Students (1/26 - 2/23)
Shenandoah Valley Open Tech Jobs
Rocktown Tech Slack Channel Link
November 29, 2018 | 11:45 am - 1:00 pm
Wood Grill Buffet, Harrisonburg

Due to poor weather on November 15th, we decided to cancel the luncheon and reschedule it for November 29th. A new registration form for this date has been posted on the event page. We ask that you please complete this new form to let us know whether or not you will be able to attend. Below you can find information about the topic and speaker for this luncheon.

Over the last ten years, deep neural networks have been at the center of a machine learning boom that has seen hundreds of millions of dollars of investment from the tech industry, governments and academic institutions.  Dr. Sprague will briefly explain how deep neural networks work, why they've had such a big impact, and why they *won't* solve all of our problems.

About the Speaker
Nathan Sprague , Ph.D., is an Associate Professor of Computer Science at James Madison University and the Coordinator of the JMU Robotics Minor.  He teaches courses in AI, Robotics and Autonomous Vehicles.  His research interests are in the areas of machine learning and computer vision.


Member News: 
Cadence and Valley Career & Technical Center Join Forces to Invest in the Future of Manufacturing
November 14, 2018 (Staunton, VA)

Cadence, Inc. recently partnered with Valley Career and Technical Center (VCTC), located in Fishersville, Virginia, to help get their new Computer Integrated Manufacturing (CIM) program up and running to help train the next generation of the manufacturing workforce. Cadence donated funds that provided a UR5 collaborative robot to be used in the lab's Robotics & Automation Work Cell, four Form 2 production-quality Stereolithographic (SLA) printers with a year supply of resin, a UV Cure post-processing chamber and a post-processing wash unit all to be used in the Design & Additive Manufacturing Work Cell in an effort to invest in the future of manufacturing.
"The donation from Cadence contributed to making this a game-changing, benchmark program and facility," stated Andrei Dacko, CIM Instructor. "We are working on breaking down the barriers and stereotypes about manufacturing and introducing students to really cool technologies used in state-of-the-art fabrication."

VCTC's CIM program began in August with fourteen students enrolled from various local high schools. The one-year program provides juniors and seniors with training across core manufacturing and engineering skillsets including the design process, technical sketching and drawing, 2D and 3D part modelling, design for manufacturability, reverse engineering, robotics, automation and manufacturing processes.  Upon graduating from the program, students will have a solid foundation for success as an entry level operator with local manufacturers, as well as preparation necessary for post-secondary education in advanced manufacturing and engineering-related degree programs.

"This investment planted a seed for a much higher return in the future," said Ken Cleveland, Cadence's Chief Financial Officer. "We are very proud to support our community's youth and in turn, we look forward to hopefully having some of these students join our team down the road."

Mr. Dacko also stated, "This partnership is invaluable as it demonstrates something local students and schools don't often experience - an up-front commitment from a local employer that says we believe in you, and we believe in the importance of what you're learning and want to help set you up for success." This partnership also offers students the opportunity to collaborate with Cadence on mutually beneficial projects such as part design and prototyping which provides students with real-world skills.
In addition, CIM students got the chance to tour Cadence's Virginia facility to see the machines and processes in action.  This experience allowed students to observe a day-in-the-life of manufacturing so that they could then apply that knowledge back in the classroom. 

About Cadence, Inc. - Cadence Inc. is a leading supplier of advanced products, technologies and services to medical device and specialty industrial companies worldwide. Cadence develops solutions-oriented relationships with customers and provides highly technical solutions that enable improved product performance in clearly measurable ways. Cadence employs approximately 500 people with its corporate headquarters in Staunton, Virginia and additional locations in Rhode Island, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin.
For more information on Cadence, please visit our website at     

About Valley Career and Technical Center - Valley Career and Technical Center is part of the public school systems of Augusta County, Waynesboro and Staunton, Virginia. Students gain technical skills in a variety of career areas designed to prepare them for entry level positions or acceptance into post-secondary education. In addition to the many high school programs, VCTC offers career and technical training for adults interested in apprenticeship programs, basic skills training or a GED.

For more information on VCTC's CIM program, visit     


November 19, 2018 | 10:00 am

As an engaged member of the entrepreneur education landscape in Virginia, we encourage your input and action in the Strategic Doing™ for Entrepreneurial Mindset and Skillset Development initiative from January 18 through May 20, 2019.

This initiative, supported by the Virginia Provosts' Initiative for Integrated Economic Development, will gather entrepreneur development advocates from  GoVirginia Regions 3 and 8 to connect, strategize, and act to leverage, enhance, and grow initiatives that benefit the entrepreneurial mindset and skillset development ecosystem.
A webinar will be available on Monday, November 19 at 10:00 am to learn more about the initiative and Strategic Doing™. This webinar will be recorded for those unable to join. Sign up for the webinar at .



Volunteers are currently sought after for both Dec. 1st and 2nd! If you are interested in volunteering, follow the How to Become a Volunteer guide. For those who are volunteering for the first time, you will need to create a FIRST account, register as a volunteer, and then apply to volunteer for the upcoming State Championship.

For additional information, you can take a look at the Volunteer Registration User Guide.

If you have any questions, contact Sonya at .

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! 

2018 Challenge: Into Orbit
Join FLL's mission into the 30th season of FIRST®! Prepare for blast off, break out of your earthly constraints and go INTO ORBITSM. The 2018/2019 FIRST® LEGO® League season will transport your team into space, where you'll explore, challenge, and innovate in the vast expanse of space.

FIRST LEGO League challenges kids to think like scientists and engineers. During the INTO ORBIT 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 signature set of Core Values, celebrating discovery, teamwork, and Gracious Professionalism®

December 5, 2018 | 7:30 am - 9:00 am
JMU Festival Conference & Student Center, Harrisonburg  
Members: $15 |  Non-Members: $20
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 breakfast is a time when we listen to and engage with our area legislators about issues affecting business in Harrisonburg and Rockingham County.

*SVTC member registration note: SVTC members who are NOT also chamber members, initially choose the "not a member" link, and on the following page, there will be an option for "SVTC members, $15."

**Parking instructions will be sent out with final details the day before the event.

December 7, 2018 |  3:00 pm - 6:00 pm | JMU Lakeview Hall

Join us at the JMU X-Labs Innovation Summit! Students from all eight courses will display and present their final projects to administrators, industry client partners, family and friends. You are invited to join us to connect with extraordinary students, watch presentations and explore an open symposium of demonstrations and displays of student solutions.

The 8 Courses:
  1. Augmented/Virtual Reality
  2. Autonomous Vehicles
  3. Blockchain
  4. Community Innovations
  5. Creativity and Innovation
  6. Hacking for Diplomacy
  7. Internet of Things
  8. Medical Innovations

eCYBERMISSION is a web-based science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) competition for students in grades six through nine that promotes self-discovery and enables all students to recognize the real-life applications of STEM. Teams of three or four students are instructed to ask questions (for science) or define problems (for engineering), and then construct explanations (for science) or design solutions (for engineering) based on identified problems in their community. Students compete for State, Regional, and National Awards. 

January 7 - 17, 2019

Are you being asked to shape how your organization protects its customer data or email systems?  Are your customers relying on you to protect their payment information?  Do you need a place to start learning about fundamental cybersecurity concepts?

This two-week crash course is designed for leaders, professionals, and entrepreneurs who have a limited technical background related to cybersecurity, data security, and information technology.  The JMU Cybersecurity Basics for Managers noncredit certificate program is discussion-oriented and formatted for the working professional.

Participants will gain knowledge that can inform their strategies to mitigate cybersecurity risks, secure data and information, build secure infrastructure, and hire qualified personnel and vendors.

Course Format
Monday, Jan. 7th: In-Person 9:00 am - 4:30 pm in downtown Harrisonburg
Thursday, Jan. 10th: Online 9:00 - 11:00 am
Monday, Jan. 14th: In-Person 9:00 am - 4:30 pm in downtown Roanoke
Thursday, Jan. 17th: Online 9:00 am - 11:00 am

About the Instructor:
David Cafaro, CISSP/CCSP has been working in Information Technology for over two decades with a heavy focus on information security. Currently he is an Information Security Officer at Capital One where he leads a team providing security and risk management expertise on application, cloud, and on-prem technologies. Though currently working in the financial sector, his career has brought him through a variety of industries including environmental lab testing, government, telecommunications, and cancer research.  David holds a Masters in Computer Science from Georgetown University where he focused on security and privacy in the information age.  In addition to his careers focus on cyber security, David has also been active in sharing his knowledge through open source and community projects including working with the BSidesDC Security Conference to help organize the KidsCon section for the last 4 years.

Grades 1st - 8th (1/12 - 2/16)

January 12 - February 16, 2019
Saturdays, 9 am - 12 pm | JMU  Memorial Hall
$140 per Student

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 on 6 Saturdays from 9-12pm on campus in Memorial Hall. Students will participate in one course selection for the duration of the 6 consecutive weeks. Technology-related courses are available, as well as many other courses. You can check them out on the event page

Technology-related courses include:
  • Lego Engineering (1st - 5th grades) (In partnership with Explore More Childrens Museum)
  • Out of this world- Science, Technology and Engineering (2nd - 4th grades)  
  • Scratch Programming (4th - 6th grades) 
  • Python Programming (6th - 8th grades) 
  • Tinker with Arduino (6th - 8th grades)
  • App Inventor (6th - 8th grades) 
  • KidWind Challenge Team Prep (5th - 8th grades) 
  • Engineering a Brighter Future (5th-8th grades)
For more information, please contact Melissa Heatwole at or call 540-568-4226.

Register for January 12 - February 16, 2019 College for Kids program
January 26 - February 23, 2019
Saturdays, 9 am - 12 pm | JMU  Physics/Chem Building
$50 per Student

Come and explore the amazing properties of waves as scientists use them in music, nanotechnology, astronomy, and nuclear physics. JMU Physics and Astronomy presents an educational event series designed especially for high school students and teachers but one parents will enjoy, too: Saturday Morning Physics. For the eighth year running, the Physics and Astronomy Department in collaboration with the Office of Outreach and Engagement at James Madison University cordially invite high-school students and science teachers to take part in an engaging enrichment program developed in a sequence of 5 easy-to-follow scientific exploration events.

Juniors and Seniors have the option of receiving 1 Physics College Credit from JMU. This is an additional fee of $123.00. 4/5 of the program sessions must be attended to receive credit. 

For more information, please contact Melissa Heatwole at or call 540-568-4226.

Register for January 26 - February 23, 2019 Saturday Morning Physics
  • Budget Referee, Harrisonburg (Full Stack Developer with front end web development focus)
  • Gravity Group, Harrisonburg (Digital Marketing Specialist) 
  • IT Decisions, Harrisonburg (Level 2 Technician / Systems Engineer)
  • Immerge, Harrisonburg (Web Developer)
  • Harrisonburg IT Department (Technology Support Specialist)
  • Chiedo, Harrisonburg (Web Development Intern) -- No experience required!
  • Jenzabar, Harrisonburg (Software Engineer, Senior Software Developer, UX Designer, etc) 
Participate in the local tech conversation: Rocktown Tech (Slack)

Currently there are 18 channels and over 250 members. Please join in! 
Sign-up link:

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  

Level III Members



CIT Logo  



city of hburg logo



Lumos Logo






Serco 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!