Over 1000 business leaders will converge on the Minneapolis Convention Center on November 6 to celebrate many notable players in Minnesota’s tech-based economy. The 2013 Tekne Awards will recognize innovation and achievement from a set of 12 categories ranging from information technology, healthcare and advanced manufacturing, to Edtech, digital-learning and start ups, to name a few. This year’s finalists include a Who’s Who of Minnesota companies including Ecolab (Advanced Manufacturing), Mayo Clinic (Healthcare Delivery), and Digital River (Mobile Technologies), as well as some up and comers like UpNet Technologies (Software) and Custom Control Systems (Start Up).
Why is any of this relevant to you, a UST MBA student? Simply put- the Minnesota High Tech Association represents one of many examples of the rich programming and networking opportunities available to a next generation business leader through Minnesota’s wide and varied list of membership-based industry associations. The University of St. Thomas is a member of the Minnesota High Tech Association (and so are over 300 other companies). One look at MHTA’s list of board members and you realize that MHTA is a real powerhouse in Minnesota.
MHTA delivers a wide-range of programming including quarterly member-only networking events, the MHTA Spring Conference, Women Leading in Technology and the newly emerging Robotics Alley– an organization co-founded by Alan Bignall ’85, CEO of ReconRobotics. To connect the dots further, Alan Bignall is the recipient of the 2011 University of St. Thomas Entrepreneurship of the Year Award and his company, ReconRobotics was awarded a Tekne award in 2012.
The Minnesota Tekne Awards gives us a reason to get to know our Minnesota businesses, their accomplishments and contributions, a whole lot better. While most of us are quiet familiar with the products and services of Minnesota’s Fortune 500 entities, how many of us can say that we have a clue about what ByteSpeed (Computer Hardware & Electronic Devices) or CogCubed (Healthcare Delivery) have to offer their customers?
Ask yourself- is there a UST grad connected to one these organizations or someone else you should make time to get to know? Who knows-perhaps one of this year’s Tekne finalists will find themselves on your short list of hopeful future employers!
I plan to share more information on Minnesota’s industry-association offerings in the weeks ahead and ways you can get involved, make connections, and stand out as you work to advance yourself in the marketplace. Go for it. Get out there.