Imagine one huge room where you can try out virtual reality, bubble soccer, escape rooms, laser tag, hammock yoga, and iron chef. These are just some of the activities you’ll get to experience if you’re lucky enough to be an employee at select companies, thanks to OccasionGenius – which makes sure there’s never a dull moment.
As OccasionGenius rolls out the first of its 2018 Team Outing Expo series, Capital One, Suntrust, and SnagaJob have set dates for these 100% interactive experiences. Employees get to play laser tag in the cubicles, try out space pirate video games, and experience boot camp with navy seals. There’s even going to be an 8-foot-tall 10x10 magic-themed escape room with light-up wands that cast spells to open sealed doors.
Further highlighting OccasionGenius’ unique offering, AMF Bowling recently signed a sponsorship agreement for the Expo series in an effort to “get in the game” so to speak. AMF has agreed to headline the events bringing Mega Bowling with inflatable pins and a large bouncy ball. The partnership allows OccasionGenius to move faster into more markets.
Seeking to further enhance company culture, OccasionGenius is planning to host more expos at companies with 200+ employees. For the rest of us, OccasionGenius provides a calendar of ideas based on each user’s unique interests. With so much going on in town, there’s no excuse to not have an amazing weekend.
Richmond has very quickly become a haven for craft beer, with breweries taking up residence throughout the city, and especially in Scott’s Addition. In one such brewery is where the story of Belle Isle Moonshine began. Co-founders Vince Riggi and Brian Marks were enjoying the lively atmosphere and thought to themselves; how can we make a social space like this with a distillery? Vince said, “it really opened [their] eyes to what a location like that could create”. So, with that idea, they set off to find out what it would take to make their dream a reality. Originally, it was going to be Belle Isle Bourbon, however the aging process would take too long and space in the market was limited. The founders then set their sights on moonshine. Not only does Virginia have a rich history with it, (which you can read about on their website) but they noticed that unlike every other liquor, there was no premium label for moonshine. From there, Belle Isle Premium Moonshine was born.
Continuing in the line of education technology companies we have here at Startup Virginia, we are proud to present EdConnective.
Started by founder Will Morris while he was attending graduate school at the University of Pennsylvania, EdConnective provides an individualized approach to help teachers move from good, to great. He realized that the quality of the teacher in the classroom is the most powerful variable in terms of student outcomes, and that the change had to start there. As Will says, “our goal is not only to ensure that every student has a high-quality teacher, but also that every teacher has access to a high-quality coach”. Will developed his idea further in the Village Capital Edtech Accelerator and by participating in Education Design Studio as a fellow before coming to Startup Virginia.
Most of us have heard the saying: “an apple a day keeps the doctor away,” but in the case of Arnold Kim, it turned out to be the truth. Arnold now runs the extremely successful website MacRumors.com, which gets more than 50 million page views per month, and is a valued mentor here at Startup Virginia. He has been featured in stories by the New York Times, Wired, and even has his own Wikipedia page; but his story starts in a completely different sphere.
There are so many ways technology can be integrated into a learning environment, but no one has really considered how to make it personal, until now. Trilogy Mentors is an education tech company here at Startup Virginia that aims to bring together the best parts of online tutoring, and the best parts of mentorship programs into one easy to use platform. Kids need something more than just cold tutoring, because let’s be real here, life is more than just memorizing the quadratic formula or being able to recite Hamlet’s third soliloquy. Trilogy will certainly help you with these purely academic “hard skills,” however they also help a student develop “soft skills”. Soft skills include things such as organization, goal setting, and learning how to study rather than just memorizing. This will help the student integrate the information they are learning into real life, leading to a more well rounded individual.
It’s no secret that technology is taking over everything, so it should come as no surprise that this includes our schools. To many, this means interactive whiteboards and advanced computers, but it can be so much more than that. A little background first, for those of us who haven’t been in school for awhile; in the U.S. today, the top priority of almost every high school student is college. As early as 6th grade, schools tell their students to start thinking about where, and what they would like to study. Once they reach high school, it becomes all about keeping their grades up and taking as many AP classes as possible so that they can look good on college applications. These schools are looking to up their college placement numbers to keep their funding, and students are told that the only way to succeed is a four year degree. The problem is, with $1.3 trillion (yes you read that right, trillion) in student loan debt and only 60% graduation rates. That leaves people asking; “why is college the only option?”