What We Do

Nurturing Beaufort's Technology Entrepreneurs | The Beaufort Digital Corridor nurtures and promotes technology entrepreneurs. Our BASEcamp facility - located in downtown Beaufort - provides scalable office space for tech startups and coworking desks for remote workers. BDC offers networking opportunities, continuing education, and member-driven programs to help grow the tech economy in the Lowcountry.

Talent

Opportunities Abound
LowcountryWorks Tech Business Directory, Talent Portal, CODEcamp, Game On!, Live Work Mentor

Spaces

Get Working
Work Spaces, Scalable Offices, Coworking Desks, Conference Room, Event and Meeting Space

Community

Peer Networking
TECHconnect, BASEcamp Gallery, Fridays @ the Corridor, Coworking @ the Corridor, Beaufort Free Wi-fi

Capital

Accelerating Growth
Regional Tech Investors, Capital-related Education, Pitch Events, Looking to add to Investors List
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Beaufort Digital Opens Applications for Board Positions

ATTN: Do you have an interest in helping build the tech / startup ecosystem in Beaufort? Also want to make an impact by volunteering your time serving on the board of a non-profit? If the answer to both of the above questions is yes, consider applying for one of our open board positions for 2023.

Apply to Become a BDC Board Member

Currently accepting applications for anticipated board openings in 2023. Application deadline Jan 31, 2023.

The board's nomination task force will review all applications and notify candidates for interview. Candidates will be evaluated on the following criteria to determine eligibility: Previous Volunteer / Leadership Experience, Involvement with the Beaufort Digital Corridor, Skill / Expertise Relevant to Support the BDC's Current Mission, Fundraising Experience, Leadership Attributes and Commitment.

Instructions:

Download PDF application below and submit completed application along with your most recent resume/CV and a professional bio to: info@beaufortdigital.com by deadline of 1/31/23.

APPLY NOW

The 12 Best Holiday Gifts for Remote Workers and Co-Workers

Have you been wondering what the remote worker in your life could really use for the Holidays? If you're more of a practical gift-giver, or if you yourself co-work and need gift suggestions to give others, this list is for you. Everything on it can help streamline the workday or add an extra sense of convenience. Plus, it's all available via Amazon Prime for one-step ordering. Happy shopping!

  • Savor Vault: This ingenious document storage system is like a folder – reinvented. With vertical and horizontal hanging files to sort all your important printouts, and 5 compartments across two pull-out drawers for storing smaller items, you'll be organized as soon as you sit down for the day and open it up. When you're finished, the dual magnetic and string-tie closures hold all your effects safely inside.
  • iVoler Laptop Stand: This aluminum-alloy laptop stand, available in 4 colors, is completely foldable and portable. It slides neatly into the included drawstring pouch, making it as convenient as it is functional. Adjustable, it also offers 6 height options to ease neck strain and make both meetings and marathon TV sessions more comfortable.
  • Video Conference Ring Lighting Kit: Small but mighty, this mini clip-on ring light comes with a bevy of options. Powered by USB, you can choose from 5 different color temperatures simulating natural daylight, and 5 different light intensities to suit whatever milieu you decide to work in that day. Never go unnoticed in a Zoom meeting again!
  • Hap Tim Carry-On Backpack with Laptop Sleeve: This large-capacity commuter backpack from Hap Tim is surprisingly stylish for how roomy it is. The two diagonal exterior pockets create visual interest, but it's the plethora of interior pockets, mesh pouches, and elastic cable holders that make it essential for anyone whose office travels with them. The inner laptop sleeve and shoulder straps are both thoroughly padded, and the square-mouth design makes it easy to pack and find your (many) belongings within. Choose from colors including mint green, sky blue, pink, and teal.
  • Caperci Stackable Lunch Box: One thing you'll almost certainly want to pack while coworking is lunch. This sleek Caperci container, inspired by the Japanese bento box, makes it simple to not only transport your meal, but prepare it, too. The locking lid up top stores the included utensils, while the middle compartment has 3 separate sections for snacks and sides, as well as a 'ramekin' space for condiments or dressing. The bottom compartment is split in half, but holds 4 cups total for a main dish (or even a bit of dessert)! It's safe in the dishwasher, the microwave – and, being leakproof, the inside of your backpack or tote.
  • Multi Charging Cable: Never get caught without your charger again. Which charger? All of them! With a USB on one end, and a Lightning charger, Micro USB, and Type C USB on the other, you can charge your devices simultaneously or just mix-and-match what you need to use. It's 4.3 feet long, and wrapped in nylon braiding to make it durable and long-lasting. USB adapter not included.
  • Silensys E7 Noise-Canceling Bluetooth Headphones: These candy-colored over-the-ear Bluetooth headphones make a statement: do not disturb! Whether your goal is to work in silence or to hear every last instrument in your favorite song, you'll be in your own little world with these noise-canceling Silensys headphones. They also have a built-in microphone for hands-free communication. They can work for 30 hours on a single charge, but don't worry about your ears getting sore, because the padding is said to be "marshmallow-like." Take clear calls and avoid distractions with a pair in red, yellow, green, or purple.
  • Ticktime Pomodoro Timer: This isn't your grandmother's kitchen timer. Designed with the Pomodoro time management system in mind, set this hexagonal timer on each of its sides to begin a 5, 10, 15, 20, 25, or 30 minute work session. Then, watch as the color LED screen gradually counts down, cycling from red to green. The alarm can be muted, making it perfect for shared workspaces. Tiny enough to fit in your palm (or purse), this will be a game-changer for anyone who has trouble getting into a state of flow.
  • Desk Accessory Supply Set: This complete desk accessory kit is missing only the pens and pencils. It includes a stapler, scissors, tape dispenser, staple remover, phone stand, and more – all the essentials you'd find in an office, all in one place. Made in a translucent blue-to-yellow gradient acrylic with gold metal accents, it'll look elegant spread out on any hot desk or cafe bar counter.
  • SchoolCubez Portable Desk Organizer**: **This contraption is like a workspace in a bag – literally. What looks like an average travel portfolio with a handle actually folds out into a 3-walled cubicle with a base for stand-alone balance. But it's not just a desk divider, either. On each side of the "wall" are essential storage and organizational features: a document folder, headphone hanger, clipboard clip, supply pouches, and a zippered slot for notebooks or a laptop. It even comes with a whiteboard for brainstorming. Simply stow it and go, no need to remove any of your things. Make any shared workspace your own instantly with this foldaway cubicle.
  • Orbitkey Organizer Case with Wireless Charger: The Orbitkey Nest keeps all your small valuables in one place – and keeps them fully charged. Say goodbye to clutter with this handsome organization box that secretly hides a wireless charger embedded in the lid. It has designated spots for an SD card, credit cards, and a spare key, but the plastic inner dividers are modular to securely grip anything you put inside. This is perfect for commuting with important, easily-lost items such as a mouse, power adapter, USB flash drive, pocketknife, earbuds, and loose cash. Paired with internal padding for safety, you'll never break or misplace any of your essentials while on the go, or have to worry about low-battery alerts once at your destination.
  • HPRT Wireless Inkless Printer: This compact, wireless printer is the definition of 'convenience'. At a size of 12 x 2.5 x 2, it's significantly smaller than a normal printer, and it works via Bluetooth or USB. Ink isn't even needed, as it uses Thermal Transfer technology to print, and it's compatible with regular A4 sized paper. With its own charging cable and carrying case, this printer is as portable as they come.

Member Spotlight: Charanor Marcano

Charanor Marcano is a woman of many talents: she's an entrepreneur. She's an instructor. She designs accessories – and digital user interfaces alike. She's even been a stock broker, in one of her previous lives. What can't she do? She has yet to find out. Twice a Magna Cum Laude graduate (first from South Carolina State University, in Business Administration, then from the Fashion Institute of Technology), Charanor is no stranger to long hours and lofty goals. These days, she not only works in tech full-time, but runs her own thriving leather goods business, hand-crafting each item from scratch. So how does she do it all? The Beaufort Digital Corridor was able to sit down with our featured member this month and ask her all about where she came from, and how she got to the place she's in now.

Charanor considers South Carolina her home, because it puts her close to her family. In fact, she cites her mother as her biggest inspiration in life, due to the "passion and work ethic" she displays as an early childhood educator. Charanor discovered her own passion for the arts at a young age, as the creative classes were always her favorites in school, recalling how math and reading bored her in comparison. "Even when I was younger," she says, "I would remake clothes. Now I know I can trust my hands, and have a good eye for design." She eventually leveraged her analytical side to earn a Bachelor's in Business Administration. But the itch to create never quite let up, even as she brokered stocks at Lehman Brothers and worked as a compensation analyst for major corporations. That's when Charanor proceeded to earn another degree in Accessories Design. She had such an aptitude for it, she could practically teach the class – so that's exactly what she did, rising to the level of Adjunct Professor. During her time living and teaching in New York City, she was able to count Calvin Klein, Marchesa, and Kenneth Cole amongst her employers, learning more about fashion and starting to develop her own eponymous line of accessories.

Then Covid hit, and Charanor recognized an opportunity amongst the upheaval: to make and sell leather face masks. "They were selling like hotcakes," she recalls proudly. Her accessories collection was taking off, but she wasn't settling down just yet. She realized she "didn't want to have to live in a big city," and relocated back to her home state of South Carolina to further expand her business – and, once again, her skillset. This time, she would become certified by Google in User Experience (UX) and User Interface (UI) Design. Now, she's as adept with a sewing machine and thread as she is with Adobe XD and Figma.

Charanor quickly landed a professional position at Luxoft in her new field of choice, and being remote, it afforded her a certain flexibility to balance her artistic and technological endeavors. They may seem at odds, but both roles she fills are actually quite complementary. "They're very similar – the inspiration process, the user interview to figure out what customers want before you even start designing. We do pencil sketches and mockups. In leather design we do patterning; in UX, wireframing. They run parallel to each other." Regardless of medium, she takes special care to make sure her work produces a "sense of delight" in whomever is experiencing it. "A fun fact about both UX and leather design," Charanor tells me, "is that they're some of the few careers you can do while watching TV in the background! For me, it improves my productivity." And it must be effective, as she manages to juggle her full-time post with her independent business pursuits. How? "I set my priorities. I learned I'm better at my full-time job when I'm fulfilled in my personal business. And I wake up at 5:30 in the morning – an hour in the morning is worth three in the afternoon."

That's not her only piece of advice, either. "I would tell anyone, 'operate in integrity.' There's a level of performance you're capable of, and you know when you're not doing your best. And if you are, advocate for yourself." That includes the way you put yourself and your services out there. Charanor markets herself on social media, but the majority of her sales are made word-of-mouth and in-person, and she credits the Beaufort Digital Corridor with expanding her networking prospects. "I've been able to connect to other tech industry professionals who have become friends. Even to the extent of putting on a (Digital Detox) workshop, I'm able to use all facets of myself to be a part of the community and give back as well." Now, she's been actively involved with the BDC for half a year.

With a strong sense of community and enthusiasm for public outreach, Charanor is thrilled to share her arts expertise and entrepreneurial wisdom with the Beaufort Digital Corridor, and Lowcountry residents at large. While she is "grateful for the ability to do work that I love every day," the richest part of her career, Charanor says, is "the warmth and nostalgia I get seeing clients enjoy something I made with my own hands." It's this people-centered approach that has helped make her so successful in every area she ventures into. No matter if she's stitching together a supple leather wallet or devising the most functional layout for an app, she takes every step forward "from a place of love and respect."

If you would like to support Charanor Marcano in her dual ambitions, her new website, Charanor.com, has recently been published, and more workshops open to the public are on the horizon.

Partnerships celebrated as Landing Pad is dedicated

BEAUFORT, S.C. (Oct. 6, 2022) – "What you are doing here is extremely important," U.S. Rep. Nancy Mace said on Oct. 5 at the dedication of the Southern Carolina Landing Pad in Beaufort.

Congresswoman Mace was referring to the partnerships that have led to yet another economic development milestone for the City of Beaufort and the region.

The Landing Pad, on the second floor of the City of Beaufort-owned building at 500 Carteret St., allows companies from out-of-state or overseas to explore business opportunities in the region. It was created to help "lower barriers to entry," said John O'Toole, executive director of the Beaufort County Economic Development Corporation. The BCEDC is one of the partners behind the Landing Pad, along with the City of Beaufort, Beaufort County, the Southern Carolina Alliance, the South Carolina Department of Commerce, and Hargray.

The City has been involved in multiple economic development efforts to expand its job base. Those include the Beaufort Digital Corridor and the South Coast Cyber Center, which is working to develop cybersecurity careers with Technical College of the Lowcountry and the University of South Carolina Beaufort. Both Congresswoman Mace, and State Rep. Shannon Erickson, also at the dedication, have helped to secure significant grants for that South Coast Cyber Center.

At the ceremony, Jose Vargas, regional manager of sales for Hargray, presented a check for $30,000 for the Landing Pad to Mayor Stephen Murray.

Rep. Erickson said the area's southern hospitality was a selling point as economic development initiatives are pursued. State Sen. Chip Campsen, also at the event, said it was important to preserve the area's beauty and resources even as the region grows.

The Landing Pad comprises 3,300 square feet, and includes a large training room, small conference room, 7 individual offices, kitchen, and high-speed internet. Among other things, it will be used for classes offered by the Beaufort Digital Corridor, also at 500 Carteret.

A Japanese company, SkyDrive Inc., a developer of vertical takeoff flying vehicles, is a current tenant at the Landing Pad.

Beaufort, SC Incubator Hosts Gaming Demo Day

Old or young, male or female, left, right, or center, video gaming is a common language that unites so many of us. From arcades to Atari, PCs to Playstations, you're almost guaranteed to find your niche in the wide world of gaming. That's why the Beaufort Digital Corridor (BDC) was excited to celebrate National Video Games Day this year, observed annually on September 12. In fact, it's like Video Games Day all year long at the BDC – especially if your console of choice is a cell phone.

Thanks to the 2022 Relentless Challenge Grant, a state-wide competitive grant program hosted by the SC Commerce Office of Innovation, local adults 18-and-older are able to take part in a mobile gaming accelerator program offered exclusively by the Beaufort Digital Corridor. The initial cohort of six students and three additional collaborators have been hard at work all year on not just playing, but designing their very own mobile games from the ground up, with the support of the program and its mentors.

Jason Loia, CEO of Dolfin Ventures, a BDC member organization, is the primary instructor and author of the unique, 8-week curriculum that guides pupils through the process of planning, building, and publishing their games to the App Store. Operational at the Beaufort Digital Corridor since October 2021, Dolfin Ventures was founded on the basis that developing mobile games is more efficient and cost-effective for budding entrepreneurs than traditional PC or console games, which can take massive investments of time and manpower to produce. Identifiable by the giant game-controller piƱata in their office, Loia and his co-founder, Andrew Branning, are pleased to lend their expertise to the next generation of successful mobile gaming professionals.

While all are welcome, this program was established with the express intention of generating high-paying potential jobs for area women who may or may not have an extensive tech background. Though the majority of mobile game consumers are female, creators remain overwhelmingly male, and the BDC hopes to bridge that divide with the program. To that end, a number of fully-funded scholarships have been set aside specifically for female participants.

A panel of judges, including representatives from Dolfin Ventures, the University of South Carolina Beaufort's Computational Science Department, Metaverse Gaming, McAfee, Zodiac Entertainment, and Gaia Online selected only the very best game ideas from a pool of entrepreneur applicants. The chosen were then "put through a very specific methodology," recalled Loia – featuring instruction on how to pitch concepts, draft a game production plan, strategize monetization, and lock in a 'first-playable' design. "We don't need to reinvent the wheel," said Loia, explaining that there exists a tried-and-true formula for taking a game from an idea stage, to blueprint, to market. According to Branning, "The big picture is to give community members a fast track to seeing what the industry is like."

This so-called "mini studio experience" is also intended to facilitate collaboration between artists and technologists, with no fewer than seven interns on board to contribute concept art and 3-D design. Even faculty from the University of South Carolina Beaufort have been brought on to consult and help with the game-building process, namely Brian Canada, Ph.D. and Professor Jim Sidletsky.

Though the first cohort officially concluded in June of this year, participants are still actively refining their games and pitches ahead of an October 20 open-house game pitch event, "DEMO DAY," which is free and open to the public. Applications are now open for the second cohort, if you'd like to celebrate next year's National Video Games Day by inventing one of your very own.

Member Spotlight: Dolfin Ventures

It's been just over a year, but when Jason Loia, co-founder and CEO of Dolfin Ventures and a pioneer in the gaming industry made Beaufort his home, he brought with him his 20-year high-tech career and a promising digital future to town. Stanford and Harvard University educated, this proud U.S. Coast Guard veteran is dedicated to creating "a beehive" of game and app startups right here in Beaufort. Long-term, Loia envisions a lively game startup locally, where young college graduates can have thriving career paths in their community.

A native of the San Francisco Bay Area, CA, Loia is using his Silicon Valley knowledge, having launched one of the first mobile game studios in the U.S. and now is working alongside the Beaufort Digital Corridor (BDC) and the University of South Carolina Beaufort (USCB) to help aspiring founders in the gaming industry. The reach for those in this field is a global one, with an estimated 3 billion gamers around the world.

Referred to as a "digital accelerator and incubator," Dolfin Ventures seeks to assist those who dream of creating web and mobile games and apps from concept to creation and quite possibly to a full startup company. For Loia, startup culture is in his DNA, having spent years working alongside some of the legends in the mobile game industry, including names like Trip Hawkins (founder of Electronic Arts) and Ilkka Paananen (co-founder of Supercell). Among his credits is serving as COO in several venture-backed game companies, president of AnchorFree and CEO of CyberGhost, two leading cybersecurity VPN companies.

Having spent two whirlwind decades in various Silicon Valley startups, Loia was in "pre-retirement" mode when he started contemplating a change of scenery. Gravitating toward the coastal community lifestyle in the South, he found the "hidden gem of Beaufort" and relocated to the Lowcountry. After arriving in Beaufort, Loia's drive to launch yet another startup was sparked again by running into his now business partner, Beaufort-native Andrew Branning. Branning, a serial entrepreneur with his own digital marketing startup, proposed joining forces to launch Beaufort's first-ever game incubator. Branning and Loia soon discovered the Beaufort Digital Corridor (BDC) while looking for office space, and after confirming with Jessie O'Brien, the Executive Director of the BDC, that there indeed seemed to be a healthy local interest in high-tech and gaming, Dolfin Ventures was officially launched at the BDC in October 2021.Jason with Business Partner Andrew Branning and USCB Media Art Students
photo by 1212DESIGN

Loia is passionate about helping founders (creators of games and apps) succeed. "We teach entrepreneurs with great ideas how to ship a product or app from A to Z. This includes a gambit of best practices from forming their product strategy, business model, growth strategy, and even testing their MVP (minimum viable product) in the market." Loia continues, "If their beta metrics are healthy, we may even fund the startup or help them find funding." According to Loia, Dolfin Ventures promises to stay with the startup throughout its journey, so that the entrepreneur always feels secure in having guidance as they evolve through their various stages of growth.

What's exciting about bringing the Silicon Valley to Beaufort, says Loia, is his resolve that the next great gaming or app idea may just be residing in our small town. The key for Dolfin Ventures is "to find that idea in a person's head and then find out if that person really wants to sacrifice everything to make the idea happen.

"We're looking for that 20-year-old who's probably sitting in class at USCB right now and not listening to the professor," he chuckles, "because they can't stop thinking about their game idea, and they know they will get it done with or without our help."

Based on his past experience, Loia understands that for his company to be successful, he needs to find entrepreneurs with the "resolve and the grit" to actually want to put it out there to market. However, sitting back and waiting for this discovery of talent isn't part of Loia's plan. Instead, he's taking a proactive approach to "growing a funnel" right here in Beaufort.

Collaborating with USCB, Dolfin Ventures is working alongside two important faculty members, including Jim Sidletsky, MFA, an assistant professor in the University's Visual Art and Design Department, and Brian Canada, PhD, an associate professor of computational science in the Department of Computer Science and Mathematics. Both are educating students in two important aspects of interactive game development and design. Building interactive 3-D worlds, or metaverses, takes both visual and graphic arts knowledge coupled with the computer sciences, including engineering, programming, and coding.

"For the last six or seven months, we've been working with local community leaders, like BDC and USCB, in an effort to build interest in mobile game development in the community. Through Jim, we set up an internship program of seven media art students last fall, and we created a game studio environment where they put their talents to the test," explains Loia.

"They did an absolutely amazing job. They did a wide variety of tasks for realworld game projects, from creating level designs, to character designs, to environmentals (3D objects such as cars, buildings, islands), to storylines and UX (user experience). They just did an incredible job." Through the internship program, Loia explains that not only did the game project benefit from their creativity and 3D skills, but they were also exposed to real-life game development experience as it would occur in a game studio.

In fact, this past summer, Dolfin Ventures hired back a few of its interns to work as professional artists, building out things that the game-in-progress required. "We have several students we're working with, and it's been a real fulfilling thing to see them go from interns to working for pay. We even have one student that went on to specialize in web and app UX (user experience) design, and she is literally wireframing two products that will launch this year."

In addition to internships, Loia says he collaborated with both USCB professors to form a "game studio class," where computer science students and media art students work together in class to build a game. "They come up with an idea, build on that idea, perfect it, and then come up with a game design document," explains Loia. "Together, the computer science and visual arts students deliver the game during that particular semester. They get to experience some of the challenges that go along with development and the urgency of how to collaborate and successfully put together ideas that will make the magic happen on the screen. The multidisciplinary collaboration experience is priceless in software development, and I'm excited to see this program grow year after year."

photo by 1212DESIGN

Loia didn't waste any time putting feelers out in the community for budding entrepreneurs. He teamed up with the Beaufort Digital Corridor to put together a custom mobile game design program and selected six finalists to undergo the program. The six-week program takes the entrepreneur through a step-by-step process from formalizing a game concept, to creating concept art, to designing game mechanics, and to designing the first few levels. The first-ever cohort to go through the program has just finished up, and they will be presenting their Game Concepts at Demo Day on October 20th at the BDC at 5:00 p.m. Loia adds, "Everyone is welcome to attend. I think many will be surprised at the ideas that are coming out of our community."

As far as the "venture" arm of his business, says Loia, it is based on searching for and planting a dozen seed ideas every year. "Every year, from these early concepts will emerge one or two that really catches our eye in terms of the potential of the founder and their idea. We will take these ideas under our wing and trial launch an MVP (essentially a prototype) of their app to market. If it shows potential, we will continue to support the entrepreneur and grow it to the next level," he explains, mentioning a recent young founder who is benefiting from their guidance.

"We're looking for founders who are obsessed. We grilled this one young entrepreneur, Shane, on 100 different questions, and they had all their answers written in a notebook. It wasn't that they had all the right answers, but they clearly had been thinking through every detail of their idea for literally years: vetting it, perfecting it, getting ready for the day when they took the step to start to build it. He was hyper passionate about building his app and all he really needed was just a little mentoring on how apps are launched, grown, and optimized. Essentially, we give them the tools to get their apps into orbit. His app, Gruvv, by the way, is a fascinating social music sharing app and will be launching later this year."

And sometimes, into orbit it goes! Loia says that monetizing an app has the potential for building long-term, residual income for the founder each time an app is downloaded. Likewise, the high-demand world of NFT gaming (non-fungible tokens) or digital assets that represent in-game content, unlocks significant earnings potential for those in the industry.

"There is a growing demand in the industry for building NFT-based games, and we are creating teams in our local community to show them not only how to build them, but also how to leverage these new business models into their existing businesses.

"We're especially excited about opening up new digital economies right here for our community to participate in. For example, for our digital artists who are making characters in a game for an hourly wage today, the big upside is that someday in the not-so-distant future they might get a check for $10,000 because that NFT character sold for $100,000. Essentially, the NFT smart contract allows them to earn a 10% residual on every transaction on the character they created for the rest of their life! We're excited to bring those kinds of business models to gaming but specifically to Beaufort."

For being a recent transplant, Loia says he already feels like he's part of the fabric of the community. "Everyone has been so welcoming and neighborly," Loia adds. "It's such a beautiful, coastal gem of a community. I can't really compare it to anything else. I just love it here."

With their innovative and collaborative nature, it's certain that Loia, his partner Andrew Branning, and Dolfin Ventures will be part of Beaufort's future history. "We want to grow something very special, build career opportunities here," says Loia, who adds that he hopes to one day see a digital training center in Beaufort. "Our goal is to build a thriving app and game development community right here in Beaufort."


Source

Landing Pad ribbon-cutting set for Oct. 5

The City of Beaufort will hold a ribbon-cutting to celebrate the opening of the Southern Carolina Landing Pad at 500 Carteret Street at 2 p.m. on Oct. 5.

The Landing Pad, an office for out-of-state and overseas companies to plant themselves while they consider moving operations to Beaufort, already has its first client.

A Japanese company, SkyDrive Inc., a developer of vertical takeoff flying vehicles – aka flying cars – will be at the Landing Pad through the autumn as it completes its analysis of the South Carolina market. SkyDrive has a testing and R&D facility in Toyota, Japan, and has 150 employees worldwide.

"It's very exciting to think that SkyDrive, which is working on some truly advanced technology, has chosen Beaufort to take a closer look at market conditions," Beaufort Mayor Stephen Murray said in a release. "This is exactly why we developed the Landing Pad."

The Landing Pad comprises 3,300 square feet, and includes a large training room, small conference room, 7 individual offices, kitchen, and high-speed internet. It is on the second floor of the City-owned building at 500 Carteret, where the Downtown Operations Department is located.

The cost of renovations to the space was approximately $400,000. Funding was provided by the City of Beaufort, the South Carolina Department of Commerce, the Beaufort County Economic Development Corporation, the Southern Carolina Alliance, and Hargray.

Upcoming Events

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BDCu SRA 111 - Security Policy & Procedures

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This beginner-friendly course introduces business owners, employees or students to cyber-security policy, procedures and best practices.

About this event

Who is this class for?

  • Students seeking alternative education or wishing to enter the workforce post-grad.
  • Transitioning Military seeking to enter the field of cybersecurity.
  • Small Business Owners

What will I learn?

The importance and practicality of policy, procedure, and protocol will be discussed, as will industry recommended best practices. A sound information security program is initiated at the executive leadership level; therefore, this course will be particularly beneficial for individuals seeking an advancement into a leadership position or wishing to improve their executive skills.

Participants will learn to write security policy and produce effective implementation plans to better protect their organizations from digital threats and liabilities. This course includes business templates to create effective policies, procedures, and agreements, for administrators, staff, third party contractors, and users.

Additional topics introduced in this mini-course include:

  • COBIT, a powerful framework used to maintain control, reliability, and quality of IT systems used by a business or organization.
  • NIST Cybersecurity Framework (CSF), a set of best practice guidelines designed to mitigate cybersecurity risks within organizations.

This introductory course provides the necessary foundation to continue one's cybersecurity training. Upon completion, the student will be prepared for the third course in this mini-series: Risk Analysis & Management.

Completing all three courses in this mini-series grants the participant an entry level Security Risk Analyst Certificate.

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BDCu SRA 282 - Risk Analysis & Management

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This beginner-friendly course offers professionals seeking to enter the field of cybersecurity a comprehensive overview of risk management.

About this event

Who is this class for?

  • Students seeking alternative education or wishing to enter the workforce post-grad.
  • Transitioning Military seeking to enter the field of cybersecurity.
  • Small Business Owners

What will I learn?

Participants will learn to view risk qualitatively and quantitatively: as it pertains to people, processes, and technologies, as well as unique intersections that can arise amongst these three elements. Modern frameworks will be Introduced to guide the beginner through risk analysis and mitigation.

A risk management plan template is introduced to help participants plan a formal risk program. Steps of the process are discussed each week and students are encouraged to apply situations from their own organizations to the template.

After course completion, the participant should have the confidence to navigate common digital environments while identifying and mitigating cyberthreats to both individuals and organizations.

This course belongs to a three part course series. Upon completing the entire mini-series, participants will have earned their entry-level SRA certificate. The SRA certificate prepares individuals for entry level security and risk analyst positions.

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