November 2011

38 Opportunities to Learn and Network

We have a fantastic lineup of events scheduled at NERD between now and the end of 2011. Ranging from meetups to roundtables to hackathons there are 38 unique event opportunities to learn and network during these next six weeks. Below is a sampling – we hope that you will join us!

Lean Startup Circle Boston November Meetup (11/17/2011 at 6:30PM)
On the final Thursday of each month, the Lean Startup Circle Boston meets to discuss a variety of topics related to Customer Development and The Lean Startup methodology. The format ranges from speaker presentations, to group case studies, to informal mixers, and more. This month’s focus is on continuous development.

MassTLC Tech Tuesday: Hiring Rockstar Developers (11/29/2011 at 5:30PM)
MassTLC is hosting the region’s colleges and universities for a night of networking and pizza with the area’s hottest developers.  This is a must attend event for students and developers looking to connect with amazing technology companies in Massachusetts – from start-ups to well established enterprise – the opportunities for students in Massachusetts are endless!

Increasing the Success of Entrepreneurial Women in High-Growth Startups (11/30/2011 at 8AM)
More women than ever are launching high growth start-ups. TCN and Boston’s Entrepreneurial Community invites you to a special Women’s Breakfast Roundtable focused on the challenges around women’s entrepreneurship in Greater Boston.

MassTLC Future of Robotics Summit (12/2/2011 at 8AM)
Join New England’s leading robotic research institutions for a look at the future of robotics. Attendees will learn firsthand about the latest research coming down the pipeline and opportunities for partnership and commercialization. The research briefing will culminate with a panel discussion on growing New England’s Robotics community through technology transfer opportunities, state funding and new university initiatives.

Random Hacks of Kindness Boston (12/3/2011 at 10AM)
RHoK organizes hackathons—marathon hacking events with multiple global locations bringing together developers from all over to hack on real-world humanitarian problems. We work together with subject matter experts from organizations around the world to define and refine those problems into concrete problem definitions. At every RHoK Hackathon the problem definitions are thrown out to the RHoK community, and the developers work their hacking magic to create software solutions.

Educators & Entrepreneurs Summit: The Future of Education Technology (12/10/2011 at 9AM)
The purpose of the conference is to bring together educators and entrepreneurs to share best practices, network, and discuss how new technologies will shape the future of education. Keynote speakers include:  Charles Fadel (Education Thought Leader, Author, and Inventor), Jeremy Johnson ( Co-founder & CMO, 2tor) and Jennifer Medbery ( Founder & CEO, Kickboard)

MegaTweetUp 3 (12/14/2011 at 6PM)
It doesn’t matter if you’re a business owner, a college student, an executive at a Fortune 500 company, or in transition. People do business with people they KNOW, LIKE, and TRUST and this TweetUp is the perfect way to enhance your life and your career by developing new relationships and strengthening those you already have. It’s also a great opportunity to connect with New England’s best and brightest minds in a relaxed fun environment.

For a complete calendar of events please click here or follow along via RSS.


NERD to Host Room to Read, Founded by Microsoft Alum

Guest post by Barbara Heffner – Room to Read Boston Chapter Leader:

“We are too poor to afford education. But until we have education we will always be poor.”
~ Nepalese Headmaster

In 1998, John Wood was serving as Microsoft’s director of marketing for the Asia-Pacific Division. Before moving on to a new posting in China, John took a vacation that changed his life. Trekking through a remote Himalayan village, he struck up conversation with a school headmaster, who invited John to visit his school. There, John discovered that the few books available were so precious that they were kept under lock and key – to protect them from the children! Fewer than 20 books were available for more than 450 students.

John was moved to action, initially collecting books from friends and family. In 1999, he delivered 3,000 books via a convoy of yaks to the mountain village he had visited the year before. The following year, John left Microsoft and launched what would later become Room to Read, with its world headquarters in the second bedroom of his apartment.

With your help, we can affect the lives of 10MM children by 2015

From these humble beginnings, Room to Read has evolved to become an awarding-winning nonprofit, changing the lives of more than five million children in the developing world by providing increased access to high-quality educational opportunities. To date, the organization has established more than 12,000 libraries and constructed 1400 schools. Room to Read’s Girls’ Education Program has supported nearly 11,000 girls in a long-term education program. The organization operates in Bangladesh, Cambodia, India, Laos, Nepal, South Africa, Sri Lanka, Vietnam and Zambia and aims to reach 10 million children by 2015.

While these results are admirable, the problem is daunting. An estimated 750 million people around the world cannot read or write; two-thirds of them are girls and women.

To help the organization scale, Room to Read has leveraged volunteers working in many major cities around the world – more than 50 at last count. These chapters have consistently raised about one-third of the organization’s budget each year.

On November 15, Room to Read’s vibrant Boston Chapter will hold its third annual Fall Fundraiser at the NERD Center. Room to Read’s remarkable CEO, Erin Ganju, is the special guest speaker. Erin, who has been with Room to Read since 2001, has been integral to the organization’s growth to more than 500 employees in nine countries. Earlier in her career she worked in international business development for Unilever and Goldman Sachs.

The event will also feature international foods, a live auction, raffle items and special musical guests – the Boston Children’s Chorus.

You can register for the event at or simply click here.