New Treasure Lake Property Owners Association Manager Ed Clark spoke briefly at last Thursday’s Business Connections luncheon hosted by the Greater DuBois Chamber of Commerce at the Lakeview Lodge.

“Thank you on behalf of the Treasure Lake Property Owners Association for being here, especially Shawn (Arbaugh) for coming today and speaking to us,” said Clark, noting that he and the new Sandy Township manager met recently.

“It’s an exciting time here at the lake,” said Clark. “I’m the new guy on the block. I’ve been here all of about six weeks or so.”

He said the he and Arbaugh have a lot in common.

“I think we have a lot to do together, which means Sandy Township and the Treasure Lake Property Owners Association, and we’re doing everything we can to collaborate and work together as a community much more so than from what I understand you did in the past. I’m very optimistic about that.”

Launchbox

Also speaking at the luncheon was Brad Lashinsky, program director for the entrepreneurship and innovation hub that is part of the Invent Penn State initiative at Penn State DuBois. He talked about the LaunchBox and Innovation Collaborative, which is a regional project encompassing seven different counties.

“It’s an initiative set forth by University Park. In a nutshell, it’s essentially a one-stop-shop for all your business needs. So we work with anybody from an entrepreneur, innovator, to an existing business,” said Lashinsky. “It’s a group of professionals working within an office, within a building and so forth that can tackle any and everything business related — business plan development, marketing, workforce development related issues, tax incentives, low-interest financial lending.”

There is also a second phase to the project as well which is maker space and technical training, said Lashinsky.

He said the maker space revolves around research and development as well as prototyping.

“A lot of our entrepreneurs are going to need to develop a prototype, (they) don’t have the funding necessary to purchase the equipment to develop the prototype,” Lashinsky said. “That is something that will be offered on the campus, as well as, we have a lot of equipment for the local manufacturing industry, like scanning electron microscopes and so forth. Again, very pricey equipment that a company will have access to use to take a look at their product, potentially where the flaws are and so forth.”

Lashinsky also discussed a technical training center.

“We realize that it’s hard enough to retain our workforce here in the region, let alone begin to recruit,” Lashinsky said. “We also recognize that a lot of our companies are going to have to look at robotics and automation, implementing that into their arena. So with our technical training we’re focusing on the EM industry with EM presses, robotic arms and so forth, to not only help further educate a workforce, but also help to introduce automation so that their companies can begin to explore that opportunity to see if they want to work with that and possibly bring that into their own facilities.”

Lashinsky said they are working closely with the local trade schools that do not offer that type of programming so that they have the potential to send some students to it throughout the day and then work with the adult workers in the evening.

“It’s a wide-ranging program, but I think it’s definitely needed and it’s a much-needed part of regionalization, together working for the greater good,” he said.

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