NASA and the Private Sector Look to New Horizons in Space

The United States has a long history of innovation in space and pushing the boundaries, from putting the first people on the moon in 1969 to landing the Curiosity Rover on Mars in 2012. At 7:49:58 Tuesday, the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) continued that tradition as the spacecraft New Horizons passed by Pluto, making the United States the first nation to send a spacecraft to the dwarf planet. While many are first hearing about New Horizons this week, its journey began long ago. Launched in January of 2006, the spacecraft has been on its way to Pluto for nine years. The payoff now comes with close-up images of Pluto and its five moons. Discovered in 1930 by Clyde W. Tombaugh, Pluto quickly captured the public’s imagination. Pluto made news in 2006 as astronomers reclassified it as a dwarf planet, officially lowering the number of planets in our solar […]

NASA and the Private Sector Look to New Horizons in Space

True innovation

This City’s Problem: Too Many Jobs, Too Few Workers

With its 2.6% unemployment rate, Lincoln, Nebraska, has one of the hottest economies in the U.S. What is the city doing to sustain that kind of torrid growth over the next decade and beyond? It’s investing in education, for starters. Building on Success The Lincoln metropolitan area has a lot going for it when it comes to education. Its residents, for instance, are among the highest in terms of educational attainment in the U.S., with an outsized share graduating from both high school and college. Local and state officials are continually working to cultivate this kind of environment, one that has helped attract all kinds of businesses from a diverse range of industries. On this front, Lincoln actually has a unique problem other cities would envy: Many employers are growing so quickly that they are unable to find qualified workers. The Nebraska Department of Economic Development is actively working with […]

This City’s Problem: Too Many Jobs, Too Few Workers

Creating opportunity | Smart government

1776 Challenge Cup is a global startup competition taking place in 16 cities across 11 countries to identify the most promising startups solving the biggest challenges in four categories – education, energy, health and cities.

Click here for all our Challenge Cup coverage.

7 Steps to Repeat Success: Skype’s 1st Employee Strikes Gold Again

What do you do after you’ve already struck professional gold? That’s a question Taavet Hinrikus, who was Skype’s first employee, had to grapple with. Yet his international money transfer startup, TransferWise, shows he was in no way a one-hit wonder.  TransferWise is—pardon our use of the word—disrupting the international money transfer industry by enabling users to forgo paying the hefty fees that large financial institutions typically tack on to such transfers. Though they vary by organization and currency, international money transfer fees are routinely calculated as a percentage of the entire transaction. These costs can rise quickly. Say you want to transfer $5,000 abroad but you have to pay a 6% fee—a common benchmark in the industry—then you’ll end up forking over an additional $300. That’s something that frustrated Hinrikus and his co-founder, Kristo Käärmann. So, what happened next? “They started TransferWise, which offers a super low-cost alternative and is completely transparent,” […]

7 Steps to Repeat Success: Skype’s 1st Employee Strikes Gold Again

Doing good | True innovation

A Startup Helping Doctors Cut Loans by Thousands of Dollars

There’s a lot  that goes into becoming a doctor. Apart from the years of schooling and training, the process frequently demands more than a decade of work and often sends aspiring physicians into debt. But that’s where LinkCapital comes in: The startup helps doctors and other medical professionals refinance their student loans at lower rates, saving money and improving their financial health. Why focus on this particular group, especially one that’s known for having above-average salaries? Put simply, it makes good business sense “We started looking into the student loan situations of health care professionals and realized that they have sizable balances—often greater than $400,000—but they also carry a low financial risk. They are highly skilled, have secure long-term and stable employment, and are high-earners,” Bill Claus, LinkCapital’s chief executive officer and co-managing partner, tells Free Enterprise. LinkCapital leverages these variables to generate substantial savings for the medical professionals with […]

A Startup Helping Doctors Cut Loans by Thousands of Dollars

Creating opportunity

Why All Presidential Candidates Stop at This Diner

Whether it’s because of their food, friendly staffs, or Americana appeal, diners enjoy a unique status among politicians. Democracy is, after all, best served with a side of coleslaw. Among presidential candidates—a colorful group whose ranks continue to grow this year—Lindy’s Diner, in Keene, New Hampshire, is a must-stop destination. If Lindy’s were a politician, it would best be classified—along with the Bushs, Clintons, and Roosevelts—in the “political dynasty” category. Yet its story is uniquely its own: Much like a carpetbagger, the physical building was manufactured in New Jersey in 1961 before it was literally transported on a flatbed truck to Keene. The diner didn’t achieve the kind of notoriety candidates crave until 1973, when it was sold to George and Arietta Rigopolous. It was the Rigopolous family who transformed Lindy’s into a destination for aspiring politicians. In the decades since, it has played host to a cavalcade of notable […]

Why All Presidential Candidates Stop at This Diner

America at work

Is That a Chick Magnet on Your Neck?

–Cross posted from the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation blog— Archmere Academy high school student Shreyas Parab was named a finalist in the Young Entrepreneurs Academy’s Saunders Scholars Competition and traveled to Washington, DC to compete for up to $50,000 in college scholarship funding and business prize packages at the 2015 America’s Small Business Summit in June. Parab’s journey to the national competition began when he was named the local Young Entrepreneurs Academy (YEA!) winner of the competition hosted by the National Association of Women Business Owners (NAWBO) of Greater Philadelphia, Parab was awarded $800 by local investors to launch his business, NovelTie, a company that makes unique neckties, such as “stud muffin,” and “chick magnet,” using symbols, icons and words. He got the idea because his school requires boys to wear ties. “My company strives to make every occasion where you have to wear a tie into an event […]

Is That a Chick Magnet on Your Neck?

Doing good

The Secret Group That Makes Getting Around Burning Man Possible

Burning Man, the annual festival that draws tens of thousands to a remote corner of the Nevada desert, is hard to characterize in a single sentence. Yet a defining part of the yearly attraction centers on leaving no trace after the event ends. The Kiwanis Bike Program helps make certain this principle remains a reality—and makes getting around Burning Man possible. Founded in the 1990s as a bike donation program, the Kiwanis Bike Program is headquartered in Reno, Nevada, and has grown in both scope and scale over the past few decades. It now performs a number of key services to the surrounding communities, including responsible bike ownership courses and a novel program that sells bikes to Burning Man attendees (affectionately called “Burners”). Though its Burning Man initiative started only eight years ago, the program has become an unequivocal success. Apart from providing a critical service—people who go to Burning Man […]

The Secret Group That Makes Getting Around Burning Man Possible

Doing good

8 Amazing Stories to Celebrate National Aviation Day

Though you might be caught unawares, August 19th is National Aviation Day. Since we cover the aviation industry pretty regularly, we thought we’d celebrate this holiday by highlighting some of our favorite aviation stories from the past year. Here are eight of them. 1. #90SecondsWith Sir Richard Branson One of the world’s most famous entrepreneurs, Sir Richard Branson single-handedly built the Virgin Group empire, a global conglomerate made up of some 400 unique companies. At last year’s Aviation Summit, we got the chance to interview the British business luminary for our ongoing #90SecondsWith series. During the interview, Branson talked about his latest venture, Virgin StartUp, and he also let us in on a little secret, specifically what he brings in his carry-on when he travels. Want to hear what Branson has to say? You can check out our full #90SecondsWith interview with Branson here: #90SecondsWith: Sir Richard Branson 2. A Profile […]

8 Amazing Stories to Celebrate National Aviation Day

True innovation