Updated: Jan 29
At Greater Fergus Falls, our goal is to help businesses of all sizes grow and thrive. In addition to working with established companies, our team also assists entrepreneurs and small business owners with their start-ups. We recently announced an incredible opportunity for entrepreneurs to take their ideas to the next level with the Launch MN & ILT Studios West Central 2021 Cohort and are thrilled to sponsor two participants as they take part in the 20-week program.
What is the ILT Academy?
The ILT Academy is designed to help individuals and teams shape their business ideas, fine-tune existing products, and develop and grow like a start-up. The program is a partnership between ILT Academy, LaunchMinnesota, and the Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development.
Throughout the program, participants will explore and refine their ideas through remote learning, collaboration, and coaching. Facilitators will match cohort members to a mentor to help them hone their ideas while developing the skills to build a successful business.
In the start-up school series, participants will learn how to:
Develop and shape ideas
Assess market potential
Validate products, customers, and markets
Plan for future development
Prepare for investment
At the end of the program, the cohort will have a chance to pitch a group of regional start-up investors and get feedback on their business ideas.
Meet Our Entrepreneurs
As mentioned above, Greater Fergus Falls has the pleasure of sponsoring two entrepreneurs to participate in this academy. Those with a business idea, start-up business, or existing business were encouraged to apply, and we received many applications from great candidates. While we wish we could have sponsored them all, our team is so delighted to have awarded sponsorships to Dr. Shauna Overgaard and Nancy XiáoRong Valentine.
Now, let’s meet the entrepreneurs!
Dr. Shauna Overgaard
Dr. Shauna Overgaard is a full-time assistant professor in health informatics and the founder of Clarity Applied Intelligence. Her passion lies in using machine learning to personalize healthcare by accurately predicting an individual’s course of health, illness, and response to treatment. Clarity Applied Intelligence develops and implements artificial intelligence algorithms and offers consultative services in healthcare data analytics to companies that prioritize personalized medicine.
“My motivation in this work is to honor the intelligence and autonomy of the human being. To democratize healthcare data is to empower humans to own and understand themselves,” Dr. Overgaard explains. “Ultimately, I’m interested in helping humans understand and objectively monitor their brain functions and health through machine learning. But to do this, we must lay a solid foundation.”