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The Shenandoah Valley Connectiontop   

November 15, 2013 

Quick Links to each article
Annual Pre-Session Legislative Breakfast December 4th
FLL Regional Tournament Nov. 16 at JMU
JMU CISE Professor attends prestigious conference
LFCC wins Award for Website
Save the Date for Startup Weekend February 7-9
CIT announces Winter Webinar Schedule
Annual Pre-Session Legislative Breakfast (pre-registration required)
December 4, 2013; 7:30 - 9:00 am, 

JMU Festival Conference & Student Ctr.

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This is your chance to hear directly from our local Legislative delegation on their priorities and opinions of what the next General Assembly might accomplish. It is also your chance to state your position or voice your concerns. We are looking at a session with a new Governor in the executive office. We are also looking at the first session following the Virginia Chamber's Blueprint Virginia ("a roadmap for economic competitiveness") debut in mid-November. Let's hear what our local delegation has to say about the upcoming session.


FREE -- BUT  we ask that all attendees pre-register no later than December 2, 10 am. [A hot breakfast will be served and we will reserve --and pay for-- a meal for each attendee. In case you need to cancel after registering, please advise us by Dec. 2nd.]



Sponsored by:  

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Regional FIRST Lego League (FLL)

THIS Saturday, Nov. 16

The SVTC is  a sponsor of the regional FLL competition this Saturday, Nov 16th at JMU's CISAT building. Most of the competitions are open to the public from 9am-3pm.The SVTC helps sponsor new local teams and by volunteering at the competitions held in HarrisonburgDrop by to cheer on some future techies.  For more information about Saturday's event visit the Website or contact Ralph Grove with JMU/CISE.
be prepared. be safe. re-build

FIRST Lego League (FLL) is a fun STEM activity that celebrates science and technology with children aged 9 through 14. Using LEGO MINDSTORMS Robotics Invention System technology, young participants can build a robot using LEGO bricks and other elements such as sensors, motors, and gears. Teams gain hands-on experience in engineering and computer programming principles as they construct and program their unique robot inventions.  This year's challenge is Nature's Fury -- be prepared. be safe. re-build.

Mark you calendars for December 7 & 8 for the FLL  Virginia / DC FIRST Lego League competition which is held at JMU's Memorial Hall and Harrisonburg High.  It's a massive event: it pits 100 teams of 9 - 14 year olds from across the state against each other in 3 competitions.  They come with team 3-9 members, plus coaches, mentors, parents, siblings  and assorted supporters.  They stay the  night; dine and shop; and compete for 2 frantic days of non-stop action.  

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Member News:
JMU CISE Assistant Professor invited to attend engineering education symposium    
Dr. Jacquelyn K. Nagel (Assistant Professor, Engineering) was one among 73 of the nation's most innovative engineering educators to participate in the National Academy of Engineering's fifth Frontiers of Engineering Education symposium held Oct. 27-30 in Irvine, Calif. The attendees were nominated by fellow engineers or deans and chosen from a highly competitive pool of applicants. The event provided a forum for educators to discuss and critique new ideas and teaching methods to enhance the education experience of engineering students. The participants also received a charter to make improvements at their home institutions.

"Collaborations among these education experts are vital to developing new teaching practices for all engineering faculty who will prepare engineering students for the problems of our time" said NAE President Dan Mote.

The National Academy of Engineering, an independent, nonprofit organization, seeks to advance the well-being of the nation by promoting a vibrant engineering profession and by marshaling the expertise and insights of eminent engineers to provide independent advice to the federal government on matters involving engineering and technology.

Member News:  LFCC Website wins Best of Web award
Event Subtitle

Lord Fairfax Community College was recently awarded the 2013 Best of the Web Award in the higher education category by the Center for Digital Education. The award is presented to K-12 and higher education websites that enrich both student and teacher education and for ease of access. The Center for Digital Education is a national research and advisory institute specializing in educational technology trends, policy and funding.


"We try to make it clear and simple to use and try not to clutter it up with information that may not apply to our students." Says Adam Riddle, LFCC's digital media specialist. He also sites that LFCC website guides students step by step through the application process and scheduling classes. The site is also mobile with access via iPhone and iPad.


Use this link to view LFCC's website 

Link to original Winchester Star Article 


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Save the Date for Startup Weekend
February 7-9, 2014, JMU's Showker Hall

Go to 
for more information about the event in February including a schedule of the weekend and registration. EARLY PRICING IS IN EFFECT
Member News:  CIT announces Winter SBIR/ STTR Webinar Schedule
CIT is hosting a series of four webinars that will help those new to SBIR/STTR learn some key skills to effective SBIR/STTR submissions.  SBIR (or Small Business Innovation Research) is a government program, coordinated by the Small Business Administration. SBIR is a highly competitive program that encourages domestic small businesses to engage in Federal Research/Research and Development (R/R&D) that has the potential for commercialization. Through a competitive awards-based program, SBIR enables small businesses to explore their technological potential and provides the incentive to profit from its commercialization. By including qualified small businesses in the nation's R&D arena, high-tech innovation is stimulated and the United States gains entrepreneurial spirit as it meets its specific research and development needs.



  • Dec. 5 "SBIR/STTR Intro & Updates" Webinar
  • Dec. 12 "SBIR/STTR Project Scope" Webinar
  • Jan. 16 "Building Teams for your Start-up" Webinar
  • Jan. 30 "SBIR/STTR Commercialization Planning"


Register: available; for Virginia firms, for early registration and for registering for all four sessions. 


Questions:  Robert Brooke,,

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