about 3 years ago
This year at CONNECT 2017, Canada’s largest Education and Technology Conference, the Educational Research and Innovation Hub (ihub) powered Accelerate @ CONNECT. This unique and powerful event was held where over 40 school and district administrators, government representatives, and technology industry leaders were able to connect with ten exhibiting edtech companies exhibiting in Startup Alley at CONNECT. This mutually beneficial workshop allowed startups to get immediate direct and authentic feedback from decision makers while industry leaders received an inside look at emerging tech trends in education.
Accelerate @ CONNECT opened the conference from 9:00 AM to 12:00 PM on Tuesday April 25th. Anamaria Dragoi, the Manager of Innovation and Academic Engagement at ihub stated, “This year is the first time ever when we are running this type of event at CONNECT, and just by looking in the room and seeing the level of interest, I realize how much it was needed.” Dino Miele, the Chief Information Officer (CIO) at the District School Board of Niagara also gave opening remarks commenting on the importance of sustaining innovation and connecting innovators with educators.
Accelerate utilized a dynamic structural opportunity that required each start-up company to make a 90-second pitch to attendees to capture their attention and spark their interest. Attendees were then given the opportunity to choose and interact with start-ups in four 30-minute round table sessions. The workshop was concluded with a short networking session, giving everyone an additional chance to connect. Again, this structure gave an exclusive and personal opportunity for attendees to learn about innovative ways to raise the standards of 21st century teaching and learning as well as provide a unique look at emerging products and services.
The participating companies represented a wide range of EdTech areas from learning management systems, and learning models to online math platforms, or geo-literacy development. The following were the featured companies:
Answerables: Where learning management meets video games (www.answerables.com)
Buncee: Tools that foster creativity (www.edu.buncee.com)
Caribou Math Contest: Worldwide online mathematics contest (www.cariboutests.com)
Cube for Teachers: Professional sharing platform uniting educators (www.cubeforteachers.com)
Enable Education: It’s not just digital, it’s dynamic (www.enableeducation.com)
Everfi: Bringing cutting-edge digital learning and critical skills to the communities and people you care about (www.everfi.com)
Flyte Studios: Focused on educational video games and tools for grades K-6 (www.flystudios.com)
Geospatial Niagara: Promoting Geo-literacy and community partnerships through geography (www.geospatialniagara.com)
Springbay Studio: Teach biodiversity by building interactive virtual bio domes (www.springbaystudio.com)
Tri-Optimal Learning Model: Learning from the inside out: Creating optimal learning environments (www.trioptimallearningmodel.com)
Overall, Accelerate @ CONNECT provided opportunities for networking with the entire EdTech ecosystem from startups to associates from other industries. Schools and districts gave exclusive opportunities to make connections and accelerate impacts, taking businesses to the next level. We are looking forward to powering this event again next year at CONNECT 2018!
ACCELERATE @ CONNECT 2017 took place on Tuesday April 25th at the Scotiabank Convention Centre in Niagara Falls, ON.