Let’s Get to Work

If you’re a student or member of our local community who is looking to take your product or service to market, we want to help accelerate the process. ThINC offers programs to help you generate better business ideas, Refine and Accelerate your startup (The Refinery), and meet other CNY Creatives (MESH). We give aspiring entrepreneurs the resources to make their visions a reality.

Get your learn on.

We host special events throughout the year where we bring in speakers from around the area and around the country to talk about startups, tech, building businesses and building the future. We host lively discussions, social events, and standalone workshops that focus on topics such as ideation, failure, intellectual property, building teams and more.

We’re building an entrepreneurial ecosystem throughout upstate New York. That means collaborating and fostering ‘creative collisions’ through events at and around the thINCubator. We serve as a place where entrepreneurs, would-be entrepreneurs, techies, hackers, hustlers and hipsters can connect, get to know each other and start building projects.

The Refinery

The Refinery is an 8-week program that accepts applications for teams/ companies with a mission to accelerate. The thINCubator offers the group program 3 times per year for up to 6 teams at a time and offers an individual tract.

So, what is the Refinery built for?

The Refinery is for new entrepreneurs who understand their business idea, their target market and who have a beta product, existing service, or prototype. We focus on setting measurable goals and work with you to aggressively accelerate your business – growing it in the company of other entrepreneurs.

The program is free and open to both students and community members.

How do you know your business model has the potential to be successful? Have you done market research? Have you identified your core team or personnel needs? If you have determined the answers to some or all of these questions, our program may be right for you.

The Refinery accelerates the process of business development and deployment through mentoring and coaching. We want to rapidly move each participant or team through the process of building their business in a smart way, with an end-goal of producing revenue generating entities or investment ready firms. Build your team, build your network and build your business.

Sound like a fit?

Apply for the spring or winter program or inquire about the individual tract using the application below.

Program Overview

“All-Hands” meetings every other week. Each meeting will have rapid round-robin updates from each team who will report on progress and anchors. Transparency is a must. We’ll also have topic focused discussions relevant to the collective goals of the teams.

Weekly One-on-One sessions – individual coaching sessions are designed to keep participants on track and take deeper dives into issues and challenges that are impeding growth or acceleration of your business. Check-ins may be in-person or via Skype/ FaceTime

SCRUM progress updates via Slack – All participants will join our private Slack team where they are expected to provide regular quick updates to other teams regarding what they’re doing to accomplish their goals. Slack is also a great tool for participants to solve problems, share resources and have discussions throughout the week.

Apply Now
Photos from Past Refineries
In the Meantime
Inner Genius

Inner Genius is a 5-week lifestyle design program to help you reverse engineer your goals, make bold moves and build the life you want. Registration will open upon the new year of 2018! Follow us on Facebook and Instagram to stay in the loop.

When you join Inner Genius you are a part of a group that meets for 5 weeks and helps you build a roadmap to execute on your dreams whether you’re considering a career move, starting your own venture, continuing your education or pursuing a promotion. Regardless of your reason, discovering your inner genius will help you formulate your freedom & gain confidence to make real change in your life for designing a better future.

The 5-week discovery process consists of 5 modules lead with discussion & exercises for lifestyle design. Reverse engineering your goals overnight is simply not realistic. That’s why the Inner Genius participants will be responsible for homework each week & have deliverables for at the end of each week to ensure you’re confident and ready to make your next move…

We want you to make a living (or a killing) doing what you love.

What do you get?

5 weeks of Inner Genius meet-ups with dynamic discussions, exercises and access to all of the slides, resources & worksheets for $60. Not a lot of risk for a whole lot of reward.

* 5-week program runs 5:30-7:30pm each night (9-10 hours total).

 When is the next Inner Genius session?

The next Inner Genius session starts Feb 8th of 2018, just in time for New Year’s Resolutions!


Eventbrite - Inner Genius - 5 week Lifestyle Design Course

Week 1: Introduction

Brain Dump
Inner Circle

Week 2: Dream Big

Defining dreams within 6 categories

Week 3: Values

Internal GPS
Values Questionnaire

Week 4: Inner Genius

Discovery Process

Week 5: Take Action

Digging for Gold
Unplug Challenge
Wrap Up
Downtown Startup Challenge

The Community Foundation of Herkimer and Oneida Counties, through the generosity of its Corporate Partners, are sponsoring the Downtown Startup Challenge.

In an effort to advance the rebirth of our downtown districts and bring people to these areas, the Challenge seeks to spur downtown economic development in the major population centers in Oneida County. The Challenge is open to individuals and/or groups that have an innovative business concept with a retail storefront for downtown Utica or downtown Rome.

Start-ups (defined for purposes of the Challenge as any business that does not currently have a retail storefront operation in downtown Utica or downtown Rome) willing to locate in the designated downtown areas of Utica or Rome are eligible to submit an application to compete for a grand prize of up to $30,000.

Want to see what’s happening at thINC?

MESH is an open to the public event that exists to build creative collisions between Makers, Entrepreneurs, Students, & Hackers across upstate NY. Every MESH is built around a LIVE thINC Tank casual talk with a business owner who has already experienced the pathway through the ups and downs of pursuing their own venture. You get open Q&A and an environment that allows you to ask those hard questions without the pressure of selling yourself first. Casual real-world open discussion on what makes or breaks success.   

What do you get out of it?

You get to experience the thINC space, MESH and connect with the existing thINC community, and acquire experiential insight on running a business from an entrepreneur that has walked the walk. 

Get Tactical.

Community stakeholder’s, co-worker’s, and incubated companies sometimes host their own workshops at the thINCubator. Stay in the loop with our events calendar to see what might be happening in the space!


Interested in renting the space to host a valuable workshop for our entrepreneurs?

Use this application to see if it’s a fit.