we the T: Technical.ly Philly

upon opening our tenth location on Temple's campus, we reflected on the many Temple graduates which help make up honeygrow (including our Founder + CEO, Justin). We also discovered that we are far from the only Philadelphia based company which has been "Temple Made." One of those businesses made of Owls is Techincal.ly Philly, a regional representation of the larger Technical.ly Media which was founded by Temple's own, Brian James Kirk + Christopher Wink. We met with a few of the Temple grads-turned Technical.ly staff to learn more about their time at Temple, what advice they'd give to current students + how they view the future of the Philly tech scene.

Read more by scrolling through below, or select a name to jump to their section!

Jeanette Lloyd

Christopher Wink

Julie Zeglen

Brian James Kirk

Vincent Better

Celeste Sumo


Jeanette Lloyd | @jah_netti

hg:  when did you graduate from Temple, what was your major + what is your role now at Technical.ly? If you happen to have graduated with a very unrelated degree to what you do now, feel free to expound upon how that shift occurred.

jeanette:  in 2010 after returning to school after 6 years of random jobs with an AA degree in fine arts from CCP, I returned to school to pursue media in a broad form and thus graduated with a degree in what was then, a broadcast, telecommunications and multi-media. I think (and hope) that they changed it to just ‘media arts’… Just because I was good on camera, I thought I wanted to be a news anchor so I was a regular on TU TV. That changed when I realized I’d have to hide a lot about my ‘eclectic’ personality to fit the national tv news anchor standards. I’m happy working behind the scenes so I can be my weird myself.

I am the Marketing Manager for Technically Media

hg:  in your opinion, how has Philadelphia as a city empowered the technology community? In what ways can it improve?

jeanette:  Philly has had this impressive overall goal around technology that creates a safe space for businesses to thrive and feel supported. What needs to change is the access to the programs and knowledge base to address the digital divide between the haves and have not’s. We address this divide on a regular basis with objective field reporting and through our impact reporting at Generocity.org.

hg:  name one stand-out in the Philly tech community which you admire + why.

jeanette:  I’m for sure a newbie to the ‘tech community’ but one tech thought leader that I admire from afar is Yasmine Mustafa the creator of Roar For Good. Her inspirational immigration story about how discrimination against her and her family after 9/11 fueled her entrepreneurial desires and set her on a path to be her own boss by any means necessary. She used technology to lift herself out of a oppressive reality by interning, then working at a tech start up before she travelled solo for 6 months in South America to only discover her start up idea: a device that is fashionable jewelry that acts as an alarm and light, as well as a wearable that connects to a smartphone and sends texts to family and friends, and 911 or campus security, depending on the location of the woman using it called ROAR. What a badass lady.

hg:  what is one piece of advice you would pass along to current Temple students?

jeanette:  leave campus. Don’t get stuck in North Philly. . .

". . .explore every corner of this beautiful, challenging city."

hg:  where do you want to see the Philly Tech scene in the next three years?

jeanette:  in a place where technology is working for everyone, to solve real problems that effect us all like crime, poverty, education and access.


Chris Wink | @christopherwink

hg:  when did you graduate from Temple, what was your major + what is your role now at Technical.ly?

chris:  I graduated in 2008, majoring in Political Science, and I now serve as the Editorial Director for Technical.ly. I found my way into The Temple News, the college newspaper, and it gave me a lifelong love for the power of community journalism.

hg:  in your opinion, how has Philadelphia as a city empowered the technology community? In what ways can it improve?

chris:  established a hungry need for new approaches to old problems, that's taking place both with the tech community that we cover and convene with Technical.ly but also the impact community we're following with Generocity.org. Create more channels for all Philadelphians to join and benefit.

hg:  name one stand-out in the Philly tech community which you admire + why.

chris:  among many, I admire the work of Ellen Weber, an angel investor and Temple's MADV director, who balances civic concern with business value and wants to grow Temple's startup success rate.

hg:  what is one piece of advice you would pass along to current Temple students?

chris:

"Give a damn about something. Or preferably, lots of things."

hg:  where do you want to see the Philly Tech scene in the next three years?

chris:  a pair of companies on the verge of IPO, several successful stories of Philly natives benefiting from the tech boom.


Julie Zeglen | @juliezeglen

hg:  when did you graduate from Temple + what was your major?

julie:  2013; Media Studies

hg:  what is your role now at Technical.ly Media?

julie:  Editor of Generocity

hg:  if you happen to have graduated with a very unrelated degree to what you do now, feel free to expound upon how that shift occurred.

julie:  most of my professional training did happen outside of the university, because my media studies major was more theoretically focused — but the journalism-related internships I had during college, including one while studying in London, all led me to where I am today. (P.S. You should pay your interns.) 

hg:  in your opinion, how has Philadelphia as a city empowered the social impact community?

julie:

"Its diversity is one of its greatest strengths."

There's so much opportunity for collaboration from people with different points of view, yet similar goals.

hg:  in what ways can it improve?

julie:  accordingly, it needs to prioritize economic equity for its diverse citizenship. We're both a city booming with upwardly mobile millennials and one with a 26.3 percent poverty rate

hg:  name one stand-out in the Philly social impact community which you admire + why.

julie:  Maori Karmael Holmes, who founded the BlackStar Film Festival. She's also a former Temple student and professor, and I interned under her at the Leeway Foundation. She's had her hands in so many awesome projects and organizations in the city and isn't afraid to talk about how hard it is to stay balanced. 

hg:  what is one piece of advice you would pass along to current Temple students?

julie:  hang out with your professors. Many of them are actually pretty very cool, and they'll be your first professional sponsors

hg:  where do you want to see the Philly social impact scene in the next three years?

julie:  with a leadership that's representative of its residents 


Brian James Kirk | @brianjameskirk

hg:  when did you graduate from Temple + what was your major?

brian:  2008; Journalism, School of Communications and Theater

hg:  what is your role now at Technical.ly?

brian:  I'm Co-Founder and Business Director, which doesn't involve a lot of day-to-day production in journalistic storytelling, but journalism is the heart of our product and is what our business team is tasked with innovating and selling.

hg:  in your opinion, how has Philadelphia as a city empowered the technology community?

brian:  seeing more and more long-standing institutions take pride in and support the local technology community has been the biggest change. It's when these historic institutions started taking note that the pathways for success seemed to clear for a lot of organizations building support for knowledge workers here, and widening their impact.

hg:  in what ways can it improve?

brian:  I think this community could be improved by looking outside of itself more. I think there needs to be more connectivity between the tech community and other industries and practices. There's still a lot that the tech community could learn from living in a complicated and diverse place such as Philadelphia, and vice versa.

hg:  name one stand-out in the Philly tech community which you admire + why.

brian:  tagging Temple professor Jerry Radcliffe in the Department of Criminal Justice, who's done fascinating research on the data behind policing, which doesn't get near enough publicity considering how smart the work he and his department are doing.

hg:  what is one piece of advice you would pass along to current Temple students?

brian:  get an internship that matters. Start building a community in your professional field before you leave school. And learn from anyone willing to teach you something.

hg:  where do you want to see the Philly Tech scene in the next three years?

brian:  I'd love to see it grow an awareness of itself as part of a greater chain of cities long the East Coast. I don't hear often enough about entrepreneurs and workers seeing the Mid-Atlantic—New York, DC, Baltimore, Delaware + more widely—as places to work and play. To grow a business and career.

"This is an unbelievably close-knit corridor, and it still feels so disconnected."


Vincent Better | @vbetter

hg:  when did you graduate from Temple?

vincent:  Undergrad 1994, Fox School MBA 2006

hg:  what was your major + what is your role now at Technical.ly?

vincent:  Marketing and economics (Ugrad); IT Management (MBA). Currently the Senior Business Manager overseeing sales activities across our 5 market areas.

hg:  in your opinion, how has Philadelphia as a city empowered the technology community?

vincent:  through its partnerships with the likes of Comcast and others, it has sought to address the access gap. There is still lots of work to do, but enabling connectivity at libraries + along public transportation routes have helped.

hg:  in what ways can it improve?

vincent:  more free connectivity options throughout the city. City-wide coverage seems very challenging, but important to sustainable growth. We need to look beyond coffee shops and the like where many city youths don't normally collect. It could also better publicize the tech jobs it regularly needs or foresees recruitment. Most don't think City + tech go together and opportunities live only in the private sector. Lastly, incorporate more tech education, not just usage, into middle + high school curriculum or allow outside course credits during school hours which count towards grade advancement or graduation.

hg:  name one stand-out in the Philly tech community which you admire + why.

vincent:  Will Reynolds at Seer Interactive. He is a great example of diverse leadership in the space. He built his business by diving into the digital media space early and becoming a trusted resource.

hg:  what is one piece of advice you would pass along to current Temple students?

vincent:

"Look first for the opportunities you can create and problems you can solve. . ."

. . .then those existing you can fulfill. Identifying a mentor + relevant internship opportunities will also serve well.

hg:  where do you want to see the Philly Tech scene in the next three years?

vincent:  I want to see a burgeoning city where tech is becoming a visibly vital part in our city strengths (Education and Health) + is driving the success of industries like real estate and tourism. By then, tech should also be a significant factor in addressing societal challenges like poverty and environmental safety.


Celeste Sumo | @celesteinthecity

hg:  when did you graduate from Temple?

celeste:  2013

hg:  what was your major?

celeste:  American Studies/History

hg:  what is your role now at Technical.ly?

celeste:  I am the Culture Coordinator with Technically Media. I work with the Operations, Administration, Events + Marketing teams. It’s a really great blend of a position.

hg:  in your opinion, how has Philadelphia as a city empowered the technology community?

celeste:  I’ve been seeing Philly really “rise to the occasion” and become welcoming + inclusive to the tech community. I have been noticing a lot of great co-working spaces for technologists and there is a lot of conversation that is happening around technology in the city. Even our government has been trying to get more involved with the tech scene in terms of  implementing new technologies to streamline more government services

hg:  in what ways can it improve?

celeste:  I think the tech community could improve vastly by continuing to become more inclusive across race + gender lines. I have seen “the scene” beginning to change and I hope that continues. I think that is something that will set the East Coast tech scene apart

hg:  name one stand-out in the Philly tech community which you admire + why.

celeste:  I really admire the work of John Cardone, the cofounder of Being.Design. Being Design is an international digital design startup headquartered in Philadelphia, PA. Their goal is improve quality of life by increasing access to good design. To achieve this, they create brands, products + experiences for purpose-driven organizations. I like that they are taking technology to purpose driven organizations which can particularly benefit from good design standards to take their mission to the next level.

hg:  what is one piece of advice you would pass along to current Temple students?

celeste:

"Build your community the minute you step on campus."

Find the professors you love and read their work, ask them questions, go to their discussions. My professors at Temple really shaped me into the woman I am today and I really am appreciative of the dedication to the subjects they taught; it taught me to ask the right questions and find the answers by paying attention + being present at all times.

hg:  where do you want to see the Philly Tech scene in the next three years?

celeste:  I would love the Tech scene to align closely with the social impact sector. There is so much potential to fix old problems with technology and there are great minds on either end of those spectrums who really need to have conversations.


learn more about Technical.ly by visiting their website + subscribing to their news feed to stay constantly updated on the technology scene in Philadelphia, Delaware, Brooklyn, Baltimore + DC!

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