Baltimore Sun’s BEST party in 2 weeks

Tech council, MIT group to hold forum

THE BALTIMORE SUN

Ladies and Gentlemen, start your calculators.

On Thursday at 6:30 p.m., the Greater Baltimore Technology Council joins with the MIT Enterprise Forum of Washington-Baltimore to sponsor their first joint entrepreneurial forum -- or "StartupLab" -- in Howard County.

The StartupLab includes company presentations and expert panels, while encouraging audience participation.

"Hosting this forum event in Howard County recognizes the county's growing importance as a source of technology-based entrepreneurial activity," said Roy Morris, chairman of the Baltimore-Washington chapter.

Melanie DeSmedt, the GBTC's senior marketing manager, said the event is significant because it should draw entrepreneurs from both regions.

"By attending the entrepreneurial forum, you provide companies with feedback on how to grow their business," DeSmedt said. "By drawing from both cities, you get more overall feedback from the region."

The main company to present is Baltimore's Salar Inc., a healthcare software developer. A presentation will also be given by WorldTech Inc. The firm uses software and government procurement skills in alerting the U.S. government about technologies developed by foreign companies and universities.

Another Charm City start-up, WhoGlue, which specializes in "social networking," will introduce selected guests to their new technology.

The event will be held in the Parson's Auditorium at the Johns Hopkins University's Applied Physics Lab in Laurel.

Click here for reservations. For directions, click here. For more information, call 410-327-9148.

Other events this week include:

Tuesday

The quasi-governmental Baltimore Development Corp. will discuss the results of a study regarding industrial land use in Baltimore City at 10:30 a.m. at the BDC's offices, 36 S. Charles St. For more information, call 410-779-3829.

The Howard County Economic Development Authority hosts a seminar on "Franchising: The Safe Business." The event will be held at 2 p.m. at the Center for Business and Technology Development in North Columbia. For details, call 410-313-6550.

The MIT Enterprise Forum of Washington-Baltimore presents sessions examining entrepreneurship, finding capital and future technological opportunities in the region.

MITEF is a nonprofit, volunteer group that seeks to promote high-tech entrepreneurship in the greater Washington and Baltimore areas. The event will be held from 6:30 to 9 p.m. at the NRECA Conference Center in Arlington, Va.

Click here for more information or here for directions.

The Baltimore Chapter of the American Marketing Association sponsors a dinner meeting to spotlight the success of the performance-wear company 180 Degrees. The event runs from 5:30 to 8 p.m. at the Sheppard Pratt Conference Center, 6501 N. Charles St. For more information, call 410-276-0027.

Wednesday

Gov. Robert L. Ehrlich Jr. will speak to the Technology Council of Maryland at 4:30 p.m. in the Calvert Room at the State House in Annapolis. Call 410-974-2316 for more information.

Raytheon Corp. and AT&T; Corp. want to work with your small business. The Technology Council of Maryland will show you how. The session will be held from 7:30 to 9:30 a.m. at HumanVision LLC in Landover. For details, call 410-974-2316.

Thursday

At noon, the Baltimore Economic Society presents David Berson, vice president and chief economist for Fannie Mae, the Washington-based mortgage lender. He will discuss "The 2004 Housing Market Outlook" at the Downtown Center of the Johns Hopkins University School of Professional Studies in Business and Education, 10 N. Charles St. Call 410-516-0700 for details.

Friday

Gov. Robert L. Ehrlich Jr. and Lt. Gov. Michael S. Steele will unveil the findings of the Minority Business Enterprise Commission's report at 10:30 a.m. at the State House in Annapolis. For more information, call 410-974-2804.

This evening, learn more about customer service with the Women Entrepreneurs of Baltimore Inc. A buffet dinner will be held from 5:30 to 6:30 p.m., and the workshop will run from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. The event will take place at the Sheraton Columbia Hotel in Columbia. For more information, call 301-797-8761.

The 28th annual American Craft Council Show, featuring more than 700 artists, ends Sunday at the Baltimore Convention Center. For details, call 410-583-5401.

Saturday

Rev your engines. The U.S. Hot Rod Monster Jam pulls into the 1st Mariner Arena for shows at 2 p.m. and 6 p.m.

Great meal for a hungry crowd. While Chef Tucker Nystrom looks on, eight student chefs from the Baltimore International College's Culinary Arts program will serve 400 guests at the Black Culinarian Alliance Dinner in New York City.

The BIC students will be among those from six culinary schools nationwide who each will prepare a course for the six-course gourmet dinner. Other participating schools include the Culinary Institute of America in New York, Johnson & Wales University and the Institute of Culinary Education.

The vegetarian course the Baltimore students will prepare and serve at the 11th annual dinner is an open-faced ravioli with tomatoes and mushrooms in a cream sauce.

"The college is very pleased to continue affording our students the ability to highlight their talents at events with great national and industry exposure," said Richard Stuthmann, a professional chef and director of instruction at BIC's school of culinary arts.

The New York-based alliance seeks to increase minority representation in the hospitality and culinary industries.

"Minorities commonly think that fast-food establishments, which pay minimum wage, are their only options," said Alex Askew, the BCA's president. Askew noted that culinary school graduates start out making $26,000 to $34,000 a year -- "not to mention the nearly endless career options that are not in the kitchen."

The gala event, which begins with a reception at 7 p.m., takes place at the Marriott Marquis Hotel in Times Square. For more information, call 800-308-8188.

You can feel the energy surge as the 4,500-member-strong Baltimore chapter of the Institute of Electrical and Electronic Engineers celebrates its centennial at 6 p.m. at the Marriott Hotel at Baltimore-Washington International Airport on Nursery Road. For more details, call 202-544-7277.

Several economic reports are due out this week.

Tuesday

The Conference Board's Consumer Confidence Index is reported.

Wednesday

Existing home-sales figures are released by the U.S. Commerce Department.

Monthly mass layoff figures are reported by the U.S. Labor Department.

Thursday

Initial claims for unemployment insurance are reported by the Labor Department.

The Conference Board's Help-Wanted Index also comes out.

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