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Middle Bit: Drake University students name their top social media sites

Drake University

As the second week of classes began at Drake University, communications professor Chris Snider held his customary discussion with students about how they use social media.

He reported the results in a blog post on Monday, revealing that Snapchat and Instagram remain the social networks of choice among college students.

The least favorite social media sites were Reddit and Tinder.

Snider says that Finsta accounts (Fake Instagram accounts) are on the rise because students use this second account to post more frequently and show a less perfect version of their lives, compared to their regular Instagram account.

“My students estimated that less than half of college students their age have a “Finsta” account, but they still see it as a trend,” Snider writes.

Snider also wrote that VSCO—the photography and social app—is gaining steam lately because as students’ parents join Instagram, they need a different outlet.

“Students feel they can be themselves on Finsta and Snapchat (and to some degree on Instagram Stories), but they have to put forth the best image on Instagram posts,” Snider says.

What else happened…


Bolstra, a Carmel-based agile customer success platform, completed a $1.5m seed round


A look inside the new Kum & Go headquarters – The Des Moines Register

Iowans divided on view’s of state economic development incentives – The Des Moines Register


Autobooks, a Detroit-based fintech startup, raised $10M in Series A funding


New cloud-based products aim to boost employee productivity –


Lula raises $420K, fueling the expansion of home service offerings –

Code Ninjas uses karate format to punch into KC youth STEM scene –

St. Louis Ballet gets into Valentine’s Day with ‘Love Stories’ –

Kansas-based TechAccel invests in ag startup Plastomatics –

Middle Bit: Drake University students name their top social media sites | Clay & Milk
A central Iowa ag-tech accelerator has secured more backers and finally has a name. The Greater Des Moines Partnership first announced the accelerator last year, naming four initial investors. On Monday, the Partnership said the program will be called the "Iowa AgriTech Accelerator" and named three new investors. The new investors include Grinnell Mutual, Kent Corp. and Sukup Manufacturing, all Iowa companies. They join investors Deere & Co., Peoples Co., Farmers Mutual Hail Insurance Co. and DuPont Pioneer. Each investor has agreed to put up $100,000 for the first year of the accelerator. Startups entering the program will receive $40,000 in seed funding in exchange for 6 percent equity. Tej Dhawan, an angel investor and local startup mentor, is serving as interim director until the AgriTech Accelerator names a permanent leader. Dhawan held a similar role with the GIA before Brian Hemesath was named as managing director. As interim director, Dhawan said his main job includes hiring the accelerator's executive director, establishing a business structure and initial recruiting for the first cohort. The accelerator will place few filters, such as location and product, on the applicant pool, Dhawan said. "When you’re seeking innovation, innovation can come from every corner of the world so why restrict ourselves," he said. One area the the AgriTech Accelerator won't recruit from is biotech. For its first cohort, the AgriTech Accelerator will work out of the GIA's space in Des Moines' East Village, Dhawan said. A future, permanent home is still to be decided. The accelerator's program will host startups from mid-July through mid-October, ending with an event connected to the annual World Food Prize. The GIA, which the AgriTech Accelerator is based on, also ends with presentations at an industry event. The accelerator has also started lining up a mentor pool. The Iowa Corn Growers Association, Iowa Soybean Association and the Iowa Pork Producers Association have agreed to provide mentors, as has Iowa State University. While the AgriTech Accelerator is loosely based off of the GIA, it will differ in its business structure, Dhawan said. The GIA runs through a for-profit model for both operations and its investment fund. The AgriTech Accelerator will have a nonprofit model for its operations and a for-profit setup for its fund. Dhawan said the nonprofit model is being used so the accelerator can better work with other nonprofit partners, such as trade associations. "These are all organizations that are nonprofits and can be amazing stakeholders without ever having to be investors in the accelerator," he said. "It becomes easier to work with trade associations in their nonprofit role when we are also a nonprofit." When it's up and running, the AgriTech Accelerator would be one of a handful of ag-focused startup development programs in Iowa. Others include the Ag Startup Engine out of Iowa State University and the Rural Ventures Alliance from Iowa MicroLoan. Matthew Patane is the managing editor and co-founder of Clay & Milk. Send him an email at
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