Check out what's happening this week @InnovateSPI
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The times are a-changing, and so is the frequency of the Innovate Springfield email. We know you're super busy, and we value your time to the maximum so rather than overwhelm your inbox every Monday, we're moving to a twice-monthly email and leaning into our social media channels in between.
Keep up with us on our website:
Keep up with us on social media:
You'll definitely want to bookmark those pages because we've got a lot going on.
  • This Thursday we're hosting Telling Your Story with UIS Communications Faculty member and editor of the local Activator Magazine, Scott Faingold. 
  • This Friday marks the deadline to apply to participate in our fall CO.STARTERS cohort.

We work hard to ensure that Innovate Springfield is an inviting and conducive workspace for all. We've got private meeting rooms, a professional conference room, and a semi-private classroom space for both the members that we serve and the broader community to utilize.

Say what?!
  • If you're a Springfield community member interested in reserving meeting space, please complete our event request form
  • If you or someone you know is passing through and interested in utilizing our workspace for a day, all you have to do is complete our daily drop-in form
  • If you're an iSPI member, and you're planning on hosting 5+ guests including yourself, please complete our event request form
It's important to note that our meeting room rental rates apply, and we cannot support events held on the weekends or events that fall outside of our regular business hours (Monday-Friday, 8:30 AM-5:00 PM).
Please also keep in mind that we're following the University of Illinois Springfield United in Safety measures and CDC guidelines to protect everyone in our community space, which includes meeting guidelines.

We respect everyone in our community and understand that we serve individuals who are health compromised, and/or individuals who have family members who are health compromised. We ask that everyone who comes to Innovate Springfield please adhere to the United in Safety policies.
Per the CDC Guidelines, effective Monday, August 2 all individuals are required to wear a face-covering, regardless of vaccination status, when indoors in common spaces on UIS facilities which includes Innovate Springfield. 
We're all in this together!

Click HERE to see upcoming learning opportunities
Click HERE to see community updates 
Click HERE to see partner events


Welcome to #iSPILyfe, where we're learning every day and growing every day and we know it. Join us!

We host twice-monthly appointments for office hours with our expert advisors! Innovate Springfield members can book appointments directly through our Google Calendar:
If you're feeling stuck and want some extra support:
We are here for you!

THIS WEEK! DON'T MISS IT! >> If you want to start something, live your vision of startup success, and be your own boss, you HAVE to be able to tell your story in a strong and compelling way. 

Don't fumble your startup story, register for Telling Your Story with Scott Faingold. In this session, Scott will facilitate a practical "how-to" workshop on crafting the story of YOU, because your customers, constituents, and adoring followers WANT TO KNOW!

Date: Thursday, August 5, 2021
Time: 5:00 PM - 6:00 PM
Where: Cyberspace
Register Here

A little about the (AWESOME) presenter...

Reporter, broadcaster, novelist, musician, UIS instructor, and founder/editor of Activator magazine, Scott Faingold first started shaking things up on the Springfield cultural landscape in the 1980s, playing in teenage punk bands and eventually writing music reviews for

Springfield’s weekly newspaper Illinois Times before fronting alt-rock band Backwards Day from 1988-1992.

He was an adjunct instructor in the UIS Communication department from 2013-2018 and is now a full-time faculty member, Director of Student Media, and Adviser for the UIS student-run newspaper, The Journal. He is currently teaching journalism courses, working towards expanding UIS student multimedia platforms on campus, and is editor-in-chief of Activator, an independent, monthly magazine focusing on central Illinois music and culture. He also finds time to perform in the post-punk band Epsom as well as neo-retro poetry/folk duo Heptanes and experimental hard rockers Splendid Flunkys.

In case you missed the memo, we're really lucky to have Scott engage with the iSPI Family!

Innovate Springfield has received special funding to support underrepresented entrepreneurs in participating in our fall CO.STARTERS cohort because we believe that innovation and entrepreneurship should be a right and not a privilege. If you're an entrepreneur with an interest in participating in our fall CO.STARTERS cohort and you: 

  • identify as a woman
  • belong to a minority group
  • live with a disability
  • have veteran status; and/or
  • live or work in a rural area

You should complete an application to participate today! CO.STARERS is a proven effective program, and 100% of the starters served in our spring cohort report...

  • feeling connected and supported by the local community in launching their venture
  • knowing their next steps upon completion of the program [YESSSSS!]
Last call for fall CO.STARTERS!


At Innovate Springfield community is what it’s all about! It’s the most collaborative, supportive, and authentic environment we’ve ever worked in. The real magic is in the people who call iSPI their work-home and the passion and value that they bring to our community.

It was a sweet treat alert, and the whole block was buzzin’ thanks to iSPI superstar Kirk Kellus, founder of Clean Impact, and his friends from Tropical Shaved Kona Ice last week!

Everybody came out, and we're really looking forward to next time.
We saw Patrick from Reverie Apparel, Vaughn from CJL Resources, Kayla and Taylor from Downtown Springfield Inc, the mail carrier, and a few of our Adams Family neighbors too!

We were so totally and pleasantly surprised. Keep up with us because we'll have a little more than a two-second notice the next time they stop by.
This is what our community looks like. This is why we call ourselves the iSPI Family. We love it here!

ICYMI: Catch the recording of the second program in the Confronting Inequities in Springfield series, sponsored by the Citizens Club of Springfield in partnership with the University of Illinois Springfield, Special Evening Policy Forum // Moving Towards Equity in Local Economic Access.

“A small group of determined and like-minded people can change the course of history.” - Mahatma Gandhi

An initiative of our founding organization, the Community Foundation for the Land of Lincoln, Young Philanthropists invigorates community leaders to join together to be philanthropists and learn more about themselves as donors.

By pooling and leveraging resources, Young Philanthropists are creating greater community impact by growing the Future Fund – a permanent endowment fund at the Community Foundation that has awarded $124,000 to local programs that help children and youth. 

The purpose of the Future Fund is to provide financial support to organizations that address childhood development and education. Special consideration is given to collaborative programs that speak to recommendation(s) outlined in the Sangamon Success report and focus on serving less advantaged children in Sangamon County.

Joining Young Philanthropists is *super* easy. Simply complete the Reply Form and make an annual tax-deductible contribution of $125/person – 100% of which is directed to the Future Fund. You can also make your membership contribution online (please specify "Future Fund").

Annual membership contributions are due on or before December 31st of each calendar year. Anyone over the age of 21 and ‘young at heart’ is welcome to join, and new members are welcome at any time. Download the Young Philanthropists brochure here.

For more information, email or call 217-789-4431.

Thank you to all who have contributed their time, their talent, and their financial support to improve the lives of individuals in our community who are most in need!

Because thriving looks different on everyone. Whether you’re starting a career, investing in a startup, raising a family, or moving back to your hometown, Springfield and its surrounding communities offer countless opportunities to thrive - however you define it.

As the sixth-largest in the state, our city is also the state capital and home to the Governor’s Mansion, General Assembly, Supreme Court, state offices, and Sangamon County Seat.

Our residents love the low cost of living and easy commutes around the area. We have a growing arts and entertainment scene, world-class medical facilities, and a wide range of educational options.

Tell EVERYONE you know that the Midwest is BEST!

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