Indianapolis, Ind., May 19, 2016 – “The Venture Club of Indiana announced today the launch of the 8th Annual Innovation Showcase. Started in 2009, the Innovation Showcase has become the largest venture conference in Indiana, with over 100 exhibiting companies and almost 1000 attendees each year, thanks to collaborative partners around the State.
This year’s conference will be held on July 14, 2016 at the Dallara IndyCar Factory in Speedway, Ind. More than 1,500 innovators, entrepreneurs and investors are expected to attend the event, where high-potential startups and scaleups will exhibit and pitch to investors.”
As noted in the press release above, “Innovation” was in the spotlight during July in our home state of Indiana. As such, we knew this would be an extraordinary opportunity to 'showcase' Connected Campus - our unique and innovative student engagement & retention solution for Higher Ed.
However…. Companies do not just get to show up and present.
In fact, over 130 companies applied for the opportunity to be involved in this year’s event. Due to that volume of interest, a prerequisite filtering process became necessary in the form of a preliminary pitch competition on June 24 at the Barnes & Thornburgh law firm in downtown Indianapolis. Only 77 companies would be invited to advance to the July 14 exhibit hall -- and only 21 of those would be asked to present their solution on stage to the Indiana tech community.
Yes!! Education Technology Associates was selected as one of only 21 companies to both exhibit and present at the July 14 Innovation Showcase.
The presentation – for this particular event and audience – would take the form of a timed “pitch”. We would have 5-minutes to present to an audience that exceeded 150 innovators, entrepreneurs, investors, and community members.
So, after several weeks of preparation… refining our message… streamlining our pitch… rehearsing in a variety of distracting settings… and timing ourselves, we knew we were ready to deliver. Our “10 minutes of fame” (5-minute presentation, 5-minute Q&A) seemed to go by in an instant.
The Innovation Showcase experience was very rewarding. A day filled with energy and potential was bolstered even further by Indiana’s announcement to invest $1B in innovation & entrepreneurship during the event.
For our part, we met new people, made important connections, shared the story of our company and product, and extended our local presence as a dynamic and growing company. Equally important, we renewed our energy and optimism around the value and significance of our solution, Connected Campus, for Higher Ed – a solution designed to improve the national persistence to degree rates (which remain below 50% for many types of institutions) by supporting today’s “post-traditional” students (now estimated as high as 85% of today’s 18 million undergraduates).
We appreciate the efforts of the Venture Club of Indiana, Elevate Ventures, Sharon Brown events, the Dallara IndyCar Factory, and everyone involved in this year’s Innovation Showcase. We look forward to returning in 2017.
In the meantime, we continue on with our mission of fueling and facilitating Innovation in Higher Education, meeting the diverse needs of our students and schools.