Ohio Wesleyan is participating in the statewide Ohio Tech Day on Sept. 24. The university will host a panel discussion and a Fireside Fridays online chat on entrepreneurship. (Photo by Paul Vernon)

Ohio Tech Day

Ohio Wesleyan Hosts Two Discussions During Statewide Technology Celebration Sept. 24

By Cole Hatcher

DELAWARE, Ohio – Ohio Wesleyan University is partnering in Sept. 24’s inaugural statewide celebration of Ohio Tech Day – an event created to raise awareness of the role technology and innovation play in Ohio’s economy and to inspire the state’s next generation of tech leaders.

Ohio Tech Day was created and organized by OhioX, a statewide technology and innovation nonprofit organization. It is collaborating with Facebook and with partners including businesses, research centers, and educational institutes, such as Ohio Wesleyan.

For the day, the Delaware Entrepreneurial Center at Ohio Wesleyan University and OWU’s Career Connection are collaborating to host two discussions:

Noon to 1 p.m. – Alternative Pathways to a Career in Tech: A Panel Discussion with Immuta

Four members of the Immuta team will discuss their career paths. Immuta is a market leader in cloud data access control with headquarters in Boston, Massachusetts, and offices in Columbus, Ohio, and College Park, Maryland. Moderating will be Omar Nesmith, co-founder and managing director of Columbus-based Venture Combine, a performance education accelerator and incubator. The panel discussion will be available online on the Delaware Entrepreneurial Center’s Facebook page (www.facebook.com/TheDECOWU) and in-person at the entrepreneurial center, 70 S. Sandusky St., Delaware.

Participating in the panel discussion will be:

  • Stephen Bailey, who holds a doctorate in educational cognitive neuroscience and works as Immuta’s director of data and analytics.
  • Claire Bogdan, a former middle school band director and Immuta software engineer.
  • Andy Olsen, a former mental health counselor and current Immuta people partner, helping to recruit talented employees.
  • Katie Wrabel, a former high school English teacher and Immuta’s current documentation and training team manager.

The discussion is sponsored by the OWU Career Connection’s STEM and Entrepreneurship Career Communities, specialized groups overseen by career counselors, known as “catalysts,” who target information and opportunities to students interested in those specific areas.

1 p.m. to 2 p.m. – Fireside Fridays Chat with Venture Combine, Color Coded Labs, and Venture Suites

All of these weekly, online chats are hosted by Steve Flaherty, founder and CEO of necoTech, which is headquartered at the Delaware Entrepreneurial Center at OWU, and are available to watch at www.facebook.com/TheDECOWU.

The Sept. 24 edition of the virtual Fireside Fridays chat will feature: 

  • Omar Nesmith of Venture Combine (moderator of the noon panel).
  • Branden Jones, chief disruption officer of Columbus-based Color Coded Labs, which operates 19-week computer coding boot camps to help people of color achieve career success within the tech community.
  • Lisa White, chief venture officer of Venture Suites, a co-working space in Columbus.

Learn more about Ohio Tech Day at www.ohiotechday.org, more about the Delaware Entrepreneurial Center at Ohio Wesleyan University at delawareentrepreneurialcenteratowu.com, and more about the OWU Career Connection at owu.edu/CareerConnection.


Founded in 1842, Ohio Wesleyan University is one of the nation’s premier liberal arts universities. Located in Delaware, Ohio, the private university offers more than 70 undergraduate majors and competes in 24 NCAA Division III varsity sports. Through its signature program, The OWU Connection, Ohio Wesleyan teaches students to integrate knowledge across disciplines, build a diverse and global perspective, and apply knowledge in real-world settings. Ohio Wesleyan is featured in the book “Colleges That Change Lives” and included on the U.S. News & World Report and Princeton Review “Best Colleges” lists. Learn more at owu.edu.