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Atul Ajoy is a successful entrepreneur and startup CEO. He runs Chromata, an AI-fueled fundraising platform still in stealth mode. He has a blog, where he pens stories on topics like artificial intelligence, connected cars and the tech behind genome sequencing.

Here’s the catch: Ajoy is just 15 years old.

Ajoy told GeekWire in an email that he’s “been super lucky to get the opportunities to meet major business leaders and learn a lot about entrepreneurship, business, and startups,” throughout his journey.

But he realized not everyone around him had those experiences.

“I realized that many of my fellow teenagers would love the same opportunity so, I decided to put together this event for high school and college students to learn from leaders in the business space in Seattle,” he said.

The event is called Innovate ’17. It’s a two-day boot camp and pitch contest designed to give budding entrepreneurs and engineers a trial-by-fire learning opportunity, designed for teenagers by teenagers. Ajoy has also enlisted support from organizations including Amazon, Microsoft and TiE.

Atul Ajoy at the Microsoft Build conference in 2017. (Photo via Atul Ajoy)

The event kicks off Saturday, Nov. 18, at Microsoft’s campus in Redmond, Wash. That first day, attendees will hear from CEOs and business/tech leaders from the Seattle area, including Microsoft Ventures creator Rahul Sood, Smartsheet SVP Gene Farrell and Moz founding president and current Outlines Venture Group CEO Gillian Muessig.

The attendees will also have a chance to form teams and be mentored by industry leaders, who will work with them to develop their startup or product ideas and business plan.

The teams will then have two weeks to continue work on their idea and create a pitch. On day two, Saturday, Dec. 2, attendees will hear more presentations and then go on to pitch their own businesses to a panel of judges. First and second place will take home prizes.

“I hope that the attendees are able to learn more about business and entrepreneurship and that the students will walk away with the inspiration to start their own startups,” Ajoy said.

Anybody with a passion for business, technology, and entrepreneurship is welcome — although the recommended experience range is 8th grade through college.

Learn more about Innovate ’17 and get tickets to the event here.

That’s one of the highlights from our GeekWire community calendar, the spot for geek and tech events in Seattle and the greater Pacific Northwest. See the full calendar here, submit your event here and keep reading for more suggested events over the next few weeks.

TAG Tech Summit featuring Dan Price

What: “Take part in the year’s premiere technology conference for Northwest Washington. Located at the Bellingham Ferry Terminal, this conference brings together two hundred of the region’s top tech leaders, innovators, entrepreneurs and business executives to dive deep into key topics for innovation and excellence in our region. We are excited to have CEO of Gravity Payments, Dan Price as our Tech Summit keynote speaker. Dan was an easy choice because of his blend of hi-tech innovation, customer-focused design and engaging management style.
Controversial, cutting-edge and user-focused design define Dan.”

When: Oct. 19, 8 a.m. – 7 p.m.

Where: Bellingham Ferry Terminal

Get Involved: Find tickets and the full summit lineup here.

SVP Fast Pitch Final Showdown

What: “If you are looking for a jolt of inspiration and optimism for the future you won’t want to miss The SVP Fast Pitch Final Showdown! The Final Showdown is Seattle’s premiere social innovation showcase and competition, where finalists vie for over $100,000 in grants and prizes. Fourteen innovators will take the stage at McCaw Hall to pitch their endeavors to a panel of eminent judges, impact investors and hundreds of community members.”

When: Oct. 24, 5 – 9:30 p.m.

Where: McCaw Hall, Seattle Center

Get Involved: Preview the finalists, see tickets and get more info here.

Infra Lightning Talks hosted by Stripe

What: “The Stripe team recently moved into a new office downtown and we’d like to welcome the community for a night of Infrastructure Engineering. Join us for mingling, snacks, and infra talks featuring speakers from Facebook, Airbnb, and Stripe. Bring your questions and a friend — but we ask that everyone please RSVP. Featuring: Jason Jian, AirBnB; Manuel Ung, Facebook; Sharif Corinaldi, Stripe.”

When: Oct. 26, 6 – 8:30 p.m.

Where: Stripe

Get Involved: RSVP and see more details here.

Embark After Dark

What: “With Halloween right around the corner there’s no better time to experience the Museum by night. Join The Museum of Flight’s Future Leaders Team for Embark After Dark, an extraordinarily eerie event in the shadowy depths of the Personal Courage Wing’s WWI and WWII Galleries. Enjoy signature cocktails, tasty bites, and atmospheric beats while mixing and mingling with other young professionals and learning more about exclusive Museum Membership perks.”

When: Oct. 27, 8 p.m. – midnight.

Where: Museum of Flight

Get Involved: Tickets and more details available here.

Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation Discovery Center Launch Party

What: “Celebrate the Gates Foundation Visitor Center’s transformation to the ‘Gates Foundation Discovery Center’ with performances, brand new exhibits, games for good, local partners and ways to take action. Featuring local band The Flavr Blue, Gansango Music & Dance, Optimism Brewing and more!”

When: Nov. 2, 5 – 8 p.m.

Where: Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation Discovery Center

Get Involved: Register and see more info on the new Discovery Center here.

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