INCubatoredu is a year-long course available to all RPS high school students in grades 11 and 12 (Century, John Marshall, Mayo, and RALC). Students have the opportunity to create and fully develop their own product or service. Real entrepreneurs and business experts serve as volunteer coaches and mentors guiding student teams through the processes of developing hypotheses about a business concept, testing those hypotheses, adapting, and continually learning and improving. This cycle of experimentation is combined with foundational business content such as marketing and finance. The course concludes with students pitching their ideas to investors to generate seed money to grow their operations.
“Entrepreneurship teaches to the heart of 21st Century skills: adaptability, collaboration, critical thinking, creativity, and problem-solving,” says Superintendent Michael Muñoz. “We know this program will ignite passion among our students and community. It is critical for us to partner with our talented and supportive community because their contributions will immediately impact the lives of our students.”
The School District is working to establish volunteer mentors, a licensed teacher, and a downtown Rochester space for the INCubatoredu program in the coming months, recognizing that a downtown space is an ideal location for community experts and mentors, as well as offering a real-world business setting for students.
Growing and amplifying the entrepreneurial ecosystem is a priority for Destination Medical Center Economic Development Agency (DMC EDA). Chris Schad, DMC EDA’s director of business development for Discovery Square and a collaborator in Rochester’s startup community, is energized by this new program.
“The students of Rochester Public Schools have a history of going out into the world to positively impact communities near and far. This program will not only help students develop skills that most entrepreneurs have to learn on the fly, it will help develop new businesses and jobs and keep talent in our region,” notes Schad.
The City of Rochester and Destination Medical Center Economic Development Agency are inviting developers to submit proposals for a potential affordable or mixed-income housing development to be constructed in the air rights above a new city parking ramp. This development project is the first of its kind for the City of Rochester.
The City is seeking an affordable or mixed-income housing development that provides for 50 percent or more of the units to be at rents affordable to persons at 60 percent of the area median income.
“The City of Rochester is especially proud of this parking ramp project given the opportunity to work with the development community to create more affordable housing in the downtown, says Terry Spaeth, Rochester Assistant City Administrator. “We look forward to the creative ways in which a developer may approach this project. We know that providing affordable housing is vitally important to the City’s success.”
A successful development project will promote the ideals of smart growth to create the following:
Provide affordable housing opportunities for persons at 60 percent area median income desiring to live close to employment, shopping, entertainment, without the necessity of relying on an automobile
Encourage the most efficient use of the downtown location
Establish a quality of sustainable design that will set a standard for future development in the area and integrates well with the current facility
Create a project that contributes to the goal of a walkable downtown
Implement innovative solutions/alternatives to address and reduce parking demand
“Workforce housing is a critical component of the Destination Medical Center (DMC) strategy as we continue to create a viable urban core for Rochester,” adds Lisa Clarke, executive director, Destination Medical Center Economic Development Agency. “This parking ramp is a DMC-funded ramp and the potential to develop a mixed-use project is an excellent opportunity to meet multiple needs – parking and housing – in downtown Rochester.”
The deadline to submit proposals is June 14, 2019.
In his role as executive director of the Rochester Area Builders, John Eischen is dedicated to supporting and promoting regional building, construction, and design. He is a Rochester native, an award-winning home brewer (he is the founder of “Golden Child Brewery”), and an advocate for encouraging more young people to pursue the viable and lucrative career opportunities that exist in the building industry.
DMC reached out to Eischen to learn more about the purpose of the Rochester Area Builders and the impact he is already seeing DMC make in Rochester.
Ranked as one of the Top Ten Cities for Entrepreneurs by Livability in 2018, Rochester is not a stranger to innovation. Spark DJ is a Rochester-based music streaming service co-founded by John Boss and James Jones. The duo utilizes artificial intelligence to power their Spark DJ mobile application and deliver personalized music directly to smartphones nationwide, offering users a musical experience tailored specifically to their preferences. Spark DJ was recently selected as one of only ten startups to participate in the 2018 Techstars Music Class.
DMC recently connected with co-founder John Boss to find out more about the business and why Rochester is a great place to launch a startup of your own.
The high school kids in Aaron Davis’ construction tech class are busy helping build a two-bedroom, two-bathroom house that’s likely to be snapped up quickly in the Rochester area’s fast moving real estate market.
The same can also be said for Davis’ students. Market forces can’t wait for them to graduate. A recent state survey found nearly 500 construction positions available in southeastern Minnesota with some 8,000 total jobs open in a region with a minuscule 2.4 percent unemployment rate.
ST. PAUL — A key Destination Medical Center leader voiced support today for an effort to build a privately funded high-speed rail line from Rochester to the Twin Cities.
Lisa Clarke, executive director of DMC’s Economic Development Agency, told a crowd of civic leaders gathered at Town and Country Club in St. Paul that improving the connection between Rochester and the Twin Cities is critical. That is especially the case as the $5.5 billion DMC initiative aimed at transforming Rochester into a global destination for health care moves ahead.
Rebecca Peterson reflects fondly on the one-of-a-kind auditorium inside the Chateau Dodge Theatre, wading into childhood memories of stars twinkling overhead as she and her siblings settled in for a Disney triple feature. That was about 40 years ago, when First Street was still open to downtown traffic and the Chateau Theatre was in the regular business of showing movies.
“I remember just sitting there looking up at the stars,” Peterson said. “I probably didn’t get much out of the movie at all.”
The Destination Medical Center Corporation Board of Directors meets from 9:30 a.m. to noon on Thursday, January 29 in the Riverview Room, Suite C of the Mayo Civic Center.
Agenda items include: formal transmittal of the Draft DMC Development Plan to the City of Rochester, a presentation from the Economic Development Agency Board and City, and a review of the DMC mission, vision, and goals.
“Livable City” is one of the 7 areas of focus for the Destination Medical Center initiative, but what does it mean? In a nutshell, livable cities are vibrant, welcoming and diverse, and offer places, services and amenities that appeal to a wide range of audiences.
In this week’s installment of “Gabe on the Street,” Gabriel talks with area residents and visitors about their vision for a more livable city. You can read more from our blog authors by searching “livable city” through the search box. And be sure to join the discussion by adding to the comments below.