NC IDEA Newsletter – November 1, 2018

In our last newsletter, I shared with readers our intention to work with North Carolina Community Colleges, CDFIs and other groups to offer a powerful entrepreneurial mindset program statewide, known as the Ice House Entrepreneurship Program (IHEP).

We asked if there was interest in broadly sharing this program. The answer was clear and urgent – YES, let’s help people develop the mindset that will help them reach their full entrepreneurial potential.

In order to do so, we have to work with partner organizations that can broadly offer (facilitate) this program to segments of the population they serve, in a variety of flexible ways. In order to do that, facilitators first have to complete a three-day training and certification process so that their organization can offer the course.

To expedite that certification process, we will be hosting an instate certification course for facilitators from December 12-14, 2018. For logistical purposes, it will be held in a location (TBD) in the Durham-Raleigh area, and participants will only have travel related expenses, as NC IDEA will be paying the training costs.

Seating is limited; however, so we will be admitting facilitators through an application process. Please review the criteria and application before applying. Organizations with demonstrable intent and capacity to offer the program to individuals broadly, will be given priority consideration. You can find more information on this powerful curriculum here.

It is encouraging when a community demonstrates urgency on a common cause. Clearly, many amongst us recognize the need to empower more people with an entrepreneurial mindset. And I couldn’t agree more.

Entrepreneurially yours,

Thom Ruhe
President & CEO


NC IDEA In the News

NC IDEA has selected 11 finalists from across the state in its 26th NC IDEA SEED grant cycle. The finalists were chosen from the 24 semi-finalists that had been selected out of 158 competitive applications. The finalists will present before a review panel comprised of experienced investors, industry experts and entrepreneurs next week and we look forward to announcing five to seven grant recipients in mid-November.

“This group of finalists is perhaps one of our most diverse for the types of organizations advancing. It defies a convenient generalization, which is great,” said Thom Ruhe, President and CEO of NC IDEA. “I think it may be a reflection of our diverse and growing partners that are actively helping more (different) companies be competitive in the grant process,” Ruhe concluded.

The eleven Fall 2018 NC IDEA SEED Finalists include: 

Earlier this week, NC IDEA CEO Thom Ruhe spoke at Gig East, Wilson, NC’s home for technology and innovation networking. Events were focused around gigs—whether it was conversation around the gigabit network, Greenlight, or creative conversations inspired by the Vollis Simpson Whirligig Park. Gig East brought eastern North Carolina together to explore next generation technology. See a recap of the event here and here.

NC IDEA Partner Events and Deadlines

Attend Collective Hustle‘s upcoming panel discussion on November 7th that focuses on bringing investors and founders together to discuss how early-stage startups can meet angels and VCs to get their companies off the ground. Beer, wine and food-truck dinner will be provided by Innovate Charlotte. Learn more and register to attend here.

The RIoT Accelerator Program (RAP) is a high-touch 12 week program that leads startups through customer discovery, product development, and growth strategy. RAP supports new IoT technologies as they go to market, identify and secure pilot partnerships, and scale. Learn more and apply here by Friday, November 9th. The RIoT Accelerator Program runs January 14th-April 5th. 

Now in its seventh year, the Innovate Raleigh Summit will convene a diverse group of entrepreneurs, business leaders, and engaged citizens from across the region on November 9th. This year’s Summit will highlight inspiring stories while exploring the vision for the future of the community and creative, innovative ways to meet challenges through a series of panel discussions, keynote lectures, presentations and workshops. Learn more and RSVP here.

The 2018 DHIT Summit will convene internationally recognized thought leaders and key stakeholders from the healthcare ecosystem in Durham, NC on November 14th to dig deep into how Digital Health can pervasively be used to transform health. Learn more and RSVP here.
The Southeast Fintech Venture Conference is an all-day event showcasing the top fintech companies in the Southeast. From startups to fintech success stories, the day is a demonstration of the latest and greatest in fintech innovation. Join prominent VC and growth firms, fintech entrepreneurs and financial services executives in Charlotte, NC on November 14th. Learn more and RSVP here.
The Helius Foundation is now taking applications for LaunchDURHAM 2019, a free ten-week course that will help entrepreneurs build their business plan from start to finish. Applicants will also be given access to their microloan and small business lending program. Applications are due November 17th. Learn more and apply here.

Last year, Governor Roy Cooper recognized November 19th as the official holiday for the celebration of women entrepreneurs in NC. Since then a couple of events have been held and now Women Innovators Day, Part III is scheduled for November 19th. This event brings together over 100 female innovators from across the Triangle for networking, good food and drinks and intimate, small group conversations about important topics. Learn more and register here.

The Black Business Expo serves a statewide community using business as a force for change. Held in downtown Durham on December 1st, The Black Business Expo is designed for all vocations who are recruiting or have cutting-edge products or services to provide or sell that can make a positive impact in the lives of the urban community. Learn more and RSVP here.

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