Last week, from October 16 – 20, Newark celebrated innovation and technology by hosting the Newark Tech Week Initiative.
More than 15 events were featured over the course of 4 days, ranging from Venture Capital Hotseat to Newark Gaming Expo, to Diversity in the Fintech Revolution. Additionally, 20+ influential speakers presented here, including Hansgregory C. Hartmann, an NJIT alumnus and the Chief Operating Officer of Oculus VR.
Hartmann returned to NJIT to discuss innovation through collaborative product development. With 38 years of experience, Hartmann “has a proven track record in product development, supply chain management, sales operations and information technology executive management,” according to the event description. This panel took place on Wednesday, October 17, at the NJIT Campus Center Ballroom A.
For attendees who prefer more hands-on activities, Newark Tech Week offered events like the Gaming Expo. The expo involved an amateur esports tournament with “tons of giveaways & prizes”, according to sponsor CalixTech, in addition to retro and indie games, gaming challenges, a Halo Tournament, and a demo of virtual reality gaming with the HTC Vive.
Aside from the generous giveaways at certain events, Newark Tech Week itself was free— something anyone can appreciate. This event was an excellent opportunity to network while having fun. Additionally, there were numerous opportunities to volunteer. Organizers encouraged any “talented and proactive individuals with an interest in tech” to register as volunteers to staff the numerous tech summits, discussions, and panels.
Tech Week 2018 was the third annual iteration of Newark Tech Week, and there are no signs of it being discontinued. The co-founder of Newark Tech Week, =SPACE CEO William Medina, enjoys having the opportunity to display the up-and-coming tech companies in Newark. =SPACE, self-described as “a premium co-working space” and incubator for startups and tech companies, hosted several of the Newark Tech Week events and was one of its sponsors.
“The mission of Newark Tech Week is to showcase the amazing startups and businesses that are fueling Newark’s growth,” stated Medina. “We understand the power that each tech company in Newark has individually, and now we have a chance to make Newark our stage to show everyone what our community is made of.”
According to the Newark Tech Week press release, this week-long event provided “an opportunity for all tech-based businesses in Newark to connect and explore the city’s burgeoning innovation scene. Newark boasts a number of tech startups that produce ground-breaking ideas, in addition to noted tech giants Panasonic and Audible.com.”
Newark Tech Week is part of an overall initiative for the city to be rebranded as a “Silicon City”. As more and more technological events occur here, Newark is becoming better recognized for its diversity and technological growth.