The new year brought the culmination of an innovative initiative that combined the talents of Columbus College of Art & Design, Tech Columbus, and Columbus State Community College, called 1492. It was a 12-week project to accelerate the creation of entrepreneurial start-ups driven by market need and opportunity into a matter of months, not years.
“1492 was a unique opportunity for the technology world, art world, and business community to come together to help businesses quickly and meaningfully get new companies up and running,” said Director of the CCAD MindMarket, Cynthia Gravino.
Part of CCAD’s MindMarket initiative program awarded five business start-ups $20,000 and 12 weeks of intensive training, coaching, advising, and mentoring.
“The development of entrepreneurialism in our community is important not only from the economic standpoint, but also so that the central Ohio region can demonstrate the unique capabilities we have here in Columbus,” said Gravino.
The program helped launch Azoti, Capstone Innovations, Churchsys, Hungerly, and Infinum Education.
In addition to advising and mentoring opportunities the start-up businesses also had access to CCAD students interns. Their social media, branding, imaging, and promotional material were all worked on by various CCAD students.
“All of the 1492 winners have decided to continue with our internship program and hire more CCAD students to help them bring their businesses to the next level,” Gravino said.
Tech Columbus filmed the inaugural project and released a video sharing the experience shortly after 1492 wrapped up.
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