Middle Bit: University of Iowa hopes to turn former art building into innovation center

The University of Iowa recently announced plans to ask the state’s Board of Regents at its September 12 meeting for permission to convert the former Art Building into an innovation center.

“The Art Building will once again become a space for inspiration and collaboration,” said David Hensley, executive director of the John Pappajohn Entrepreneurial Center in a statement. “By bringing together inventors, creators and leaders from a variety of backgrounds and skills, we will significantly enhance the university’s ability to support the next generation of innovators and entrepreneurs.”

Programming for the innovation center still is under development and is being coordinated by Hensley and Sarah Gardial, dean of the Tippie College of Business.

dsmAgile set for September 28

The fifth annual dsmAgile is set to take place September 28 at the Community Choice Credit Union Convention Center in Des Moines.

Covering a variety of topics, the one-day conference will feature industry experts in Agile Software Development and is packed full of information that you can use to become more successful at work.

Speakers and session information for the event are now available updates. Tickets for the event are $100 and be purchased here.

What else is happening?


With $40 million in new investments announced Thursday, Chicago-based e-commerce logistics company ShipBob is eyeing an expansion — starting with a new fulfillment warehouse in Cicero and a push to hire 100 people in the next year. The startup aims to help small to midsize e-commerce companies ship their products at speeds similar to Amazon. Shipping logistics tends to be the hardest part of launching an e-commerce brand, said Dhruv Saxena, ShipBob’s co-founder and CEO. –Chicago Tribune


Codelicious CEO and co-founder Christine McDonnell set out to raise $500,000 to help grow her company, which offers cloud-based software to schools that enables any educator to teach full semesters of computer science for grades 3-8. She nearly doubled her goal, announcing this week that her company raised $940,000 in its first round of funding. Until now, the Indianapolis-based company has been bootstrapped by McDonnell and the company’s co-founder, Erik Young. –Indianapolis Business Journal


Startup accelerators and incubators typically cater to digital businesses that don’t need much more than some tables, computers and Internet access to function. Blueprint, an incubator concept initiated by Kidwell, is helping startups in the trades launch and grow. –Silicon Prairie News