WILKES-BARRE, Pa. – On Wednesday night, the Greater Wilkes-Barre Chamber officially opened the Wilkes-Barre THINK Center – a state-of-the-art technology workshop and multimedia center at its Innovation Center building at 7 South Main Street in Downtown Wilkes-Barre.
“The nearly 6,000 square foot facility provides individuals with the tools and support they need to turn a concept into a business,” according to Joseph Boylan, Chamber Vice President of Economic Development, “The facility features three tech-driven private conference rooms, a co-working space with plug-and-play tables for students and entrepreneurs to meet, work, network, share ideas, and collaborate.”
“A fifty-seat theatre and lecture hall is the focal point of the center,” Boylan added. “With equipment to host virtual meetings, podcasts, lectures, competitions, training programs, mentoring sessions, and teleconferences, this is something brand new for the region.”
In addition the Chamber launched its new Wilkes-Barre Connect initiative. Connect brings together partner service providers to ensure that all start-up and existing businesses have access to the resources, services, and facilities they need to grow their business in Northeastern Pennsylvania.
“The connect program brings the best mentoring, training, networking, technical assistance, and financial opportunity curation into one system,” said Chamber President Wico van Genderen, “The program brings together the resources of seven initial partners all working to help both new and existing businesses grow and thrive.”
The program has been in development over the past year that Boylan says has been “ensuring we understand what each partner does and leveraging it accordingly, all while adopting a common language to assist entrepreneurs.”
Partners include the Wilkes University SBDC, Family Business Alliance, Ben Franklin Technology Partners of Northeastern Pennsylvania, Allan P. Kirby Center for Free Enterprise & Entrepreneurship, Diamond City Partnership (DCP), Institute for Public Policy and Economic Development; and the Chamber. The Chamber serves as administrator of the initiative.
“Connect is designed to handle the needs for all businesses and industry sectors and requires now membership or fee – it is absolutely FREE to join,” added Boylan. Information is available at http://connect.wilkes-barre.org.
About The Name:
The name “THINK Center” was created by King’s College Junior Accounting Major Andrew Coco. “THINK means Technology Helping to Inspire New Knowledge. Technology is the ticket to new opportunities and is essential in keeping the world connected. The T.H.I.N.K. Center allows for individuals to better themselves whether it be learning new technical skills, learning more about what makes them curious, or creating connections with leaders in the Wyoming Valley and around the world. With the knowledge gained at the T.H.I.N.K. center, people in the Wyoming Valley will see a brighter future for themselves, their families, and their communities,” said Coco.