I've Been in the Lab

By kheperah Davis-Ray

I've Been in the Lab

Now imagine it’s 11 PM on a Friday night and while many of your homies are busy snapping flicks at the club, you and your best friend just secured a spot with an outlet in a 24-hr Starbucks, and are discussing the next set of deliverables for both your personal and client projects. After a quick stand up meeting to check in you both set out on your computers designing the next iteration of a mobile app you’ve been working on for a number of months. A couple hours later when that task is finished, you find yourself daydreaming either because of the lack of sleep or the strong musty smell of the place crowded with homeless people looking to stay warm overwhelming your senses. In your half-dazed state, an idea quickly pops into your mind about something your friend said earlier when you were brainstorming and you grab your sketchbook to start prototyping it while pitching the opportunity to your friend. Excited you both agree that the idea is solid and book a couple weeks to establish a working model before taking it to the next level and presenting to potential investors. The clock is striking 3 AM but you’re running on pure creative energy and chuckle at how late it is. At school, you’re forced to pull some all-nighters but here in the Lab with your homie time becomes timeless because your imagination, creativity, and collective motivation is carrying you on. The work you’re doing is done by choice and while some projects are getting you some much-needed bread, the reality is you’ve been quite happy doing this with your homie even without the cash. With the right people next to you work becomes less of a chore and more of an excitement. You look over at your homie who is starting to nod off and propose that Y'all head back to the crib which you’ve also created into a small makeshift office. Driving back through the city at this hour you’re reminded of how much is possible if you keep moving. You make it home and get your rest excited to wake up and continue to grind. You’re happy with your work and everything you’re accomplishing professionally with your team and fall asleep dreaming up even more ideas you can’t wait to create in the world.

What I have just introduced you all to is Dev Jam Labs. We have created a global development studio that empowers and invests in people from our community with dreams, aspirations, and goals in/around technology. We want to create a new type of workspace that is defined by its commitment to professionally developing individuals who are willing to learn and implement for themselves from the beginning. Finding a job that simultaneously provides you with a continuous opportunity to learn while also putting your input into practice on real creative projects is tough right out of school. your input and level of creation or say in a project, although Dev Jam Labs comes to you to inspire everyone that comes aboard to follow their own passions because there is someone who needs those same exact skills but is not willing to learn it. This is where our hustle comes from, we are a team of dedicated, architects, developers and engineers drivent to learn the task that isn’t taught in the classroom. Finally, our culture comes from creating content from a perspective that doesn’t have the voice in today’s technical climate. Our inclusive background shows that we use our culture to create new and inventive ways to make holistic technology. Holistically we will encompass the view of the past and the future that does not encroach on the culture and perspective of others.
More importantly, Dev Jam Labs is a space dedicated for empowering students and small businesses. How many of you all think that you are wasting time being in school? How many of you think you will not be prepared coming out of college? How many of you have had the thought of dropping out? Well, you all are not alone, I have also had the fantasy of dropping out but saw the true reality of my mother getting on my case and potentially threatening to take me out this world like she brought me in. .These are some thoughts that come to mind everyday, although in my desire to change my current situation it has lead to depression, feeling lonely and disconnected even when I am on campus with so many of you all. I remember two years ago where Paris and I swapped ideas and to now see it coming into fruition is beautiful. I remember having consistent conversations with Ayo about how I fill limited in my actions because school is consuming to much of my own time. All of these situations have motivated me to create a space that doesn't exist.


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