All roads lead to http://nekellecelestine.com

Before the end of this week, this blog will be directed to http://nekellecelestine.com. The original intent for http://helpmelandthatjob.com has changed and so I think it would be most appropriate to use my personal URL for this blog’s content. There are plans for http://helpmelandthatjob.com which will be done on a phased basis over a period of about a year. Using http://nekellecelestine.com will allow me to be more free with my content and cover broader topic areas. I hope the general response from new content I will incorporate will be as well received as the content I currently post on http://helpmelandthatjob.com. At the moment, there is no content on http://nekellecelestine.com but that will soon change and I look forward to seeing how my plans will unfold.

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No such thing as a coincidence

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About 3 weeks ago, I attended an event hosted by Microsoft at the Hyatt Regency Trinidad. At that event I saw Brian Wood, a past manager from the Mobile Department at TSTT, a company I worked with from 2002 to 2005. I was hesitant to approach him and I left the event without saying hello. A few days later, I saw his profile on LinkedIn and decided to send an invitation to connect and he accepted. Yesterday I attended the Business Meetup at Arthur Lok Jack School of Business with Ian Alleyne. At the event, there were several people from the Startup Weekend I attended a few weeks ago and there was also Brian Wood. This time I approached him and said hello. When I introduced myself, I was pleased to find out that Brian read my blog post that same morning after seeing it on his LinkedIn news feed. Brian also remembered my father Ronald Celestine from TSTT but from all my father’s time at TSTT in Management, Brian remembers my father for his cooking ability…lol and I must admit, he’s quite an incredible chef.

I took the opportunity while chatting with Brian to showcase one of my iPhone applications, Self Mastery & Fate Cycles. This iPhone app reveals a system which shows you how you can take advantage of certain periods to bring success, happiness, health, and prosperity into your life. Brian was quite interested in the application, unfortunately, he does not own an iPhone, which reminded me of the work I need to do to promote the application. The amazing thing is that I’m currently not doing any advertising for my apps but I’m still receiving downloads daily. This is a clear indication of the potential of the apps once I invest my time and resources in promoting it.

I asked Brian about the work he is currently doing and what he’s excited about right now. Brian’s company Briza Technologies Limited, works with Mobile Epiphany, a company in Denver Colorada focusing on Process Automation. He later sent me a video showcasing the products and services offered by his company, which you can take a look at by clicking here.  While giving a brief explanation about the services offered by his company, I realised that it would be good for him to speak with Kirt Hills, who works in the Oil & Gas Industry. I introduced the both of them and I hope something great comes out of that meeting. Kirt also spoke with me about building a mobile application to demonstrate to the management team at his company. Even though the deadline for the prototype is next week Wednesday, I would still like to speak with him to see if I can work miracles with my time and help him with his presentation.

Overall yesterday’s Business Meetup was worth it. Initially I was not feeling well and contemplated attending but as Ian says, out motto is “Show Up”. Being present makes the difference.

Meeting of the minds

The later part of yesterday was extremely mind stimulating. I met three new people and discussed some new ideas with someone I’ve known for a little while now. Around 5PM I met with someone from Canada who is currently in Trinidad and Tobago carrying out Requirements Analysis with several ministries in the government for an application that exists in most developed nations and one I’m excited to see materialise here in Trinidad and Tobago. We chatted about my work at NIBTT as he had some previous interaction with them which did not work out as he would have liked. I will be attending one of the meetings with him next week between his company and the ministries, as the project they’re currently working on is one I would definitely be interested in contributing to.

As I left that meeting, I received a call from my new mentor Ian Alleyne. Earlier in the day, he sent me a link for a business meetup today at the Arthur Lok Jack School of Business which starts at 6PM. He chatted a bit about that and what my 5PM meeting was like. I’m feeling very good about the people who are coming into my life right now and how I can work with them to contribute more to society.

After my quick chat with Ian, I met up with one of my best friends for his birthday. He is currently on a course co-ordinated by the Organisation of American States Department of Sustainable Development held at the University of the West Indies. He brought two of the participants from the course with him, one from Mexico and another from Costa Rica. Daniel from Costa Rica is a lecturer at the National University of Costa Rica in the area of Geography and Omar from Mexico is an engineer who deals with solar technology. When I meet people with expertise in a particular field, it’s important that we exchange contacts. It’s also even more crucial that I take time to sit and think about how our combined expertise can be used to make society a better place.

My day didn’t end there. When I got home, the Air Conditioning technician was there conducting some repairs on one of the units caused by a group of naughty ants. He works for himself so his work hours are pretty flexible. After he finished the repairs, he started asking about the work I do and my educational background. When I told him I completed an MSc in Software Engineering he then told me about his educational background in Mechanical Engineering and Electrical Engineering. We started talking about some ideas for improvements to Air Conditioning Units and it was pretty exciting. It is definitely a conversation we will continue before the end of the week but because it was late and he has a family to go home to, the conversation ended prematurely.

I think I found a Mentor

One of my colleagues Ian Alleyne at UTT, lectures courses on business and entrepreneurship. He has his own payment company Paywise and he has experience in the financial sector as well as other industries. We initially met through a mutual friend early on this year and we have maintained contact since then. As we’re both on campus these days we’ve had the opportunity to meet up more often. Yesterday we chatted a bit before I started work on campus about what I’m doing now and what my intentions are and he offered to be of service to me. He asked if there was anyone I can currently talk to about getting my business off the ground and while I had one friend I may bounce ideas off of once in a while, I’m very weary of his advice as his vision of how business should be run is quite different from mine. For a while now, I have been hoping to find a mentor but finding someone in Trinidad and Tobago who has a similar vision to mine on how to run a business was the challenge. The business culture in Trinidad and Tobago is slowly changing but there is still that “grassroots” mentality towards business that is quite predominant in certain industries. I really admire Ian’s way of doing business. He believes in me and he has high hopes for me which is a major boost to my confidence and I hope to learn a great deal from him in the future.

Goodbye Miss

Yesterday after my last C++ class, I chatted with 3 of my students for a little more than an hour. It was really an enlightening conversation. Since I started lecturing in 2008, I noticed that most students form an opinion about my upbringing, the schools I would have attended and the area I live in, most times being completely wrong but interestingly assuming an improved version of the life I lived and currently live. This is all based on the way I interact with them, the way I dress and speak, my knowledge of the topic area I’m lecturing and in essence, the way I portray myself. Last night I spent some time with these students and we all shared details from our lives and our upbringing. We talked about so many things but it was important for me to share some of the things I learned in life. I sent them an email this morning thanking them for the little chat after class and wishing them all the best in their exams. I also took that opportunity to remind them of some of the things we discussed last night.

  • You are the average of the 5 people you spend the most time with. (John Lee Dumas – Entrepreneur on Fire)
  • Everything in life is energy.
  • Anything you can think about you can bring about.
  • In life, you get every thing you want. Most people just don’t know how to want. They focus on the things they don’t want, which draws that thing closer to them.
  • Where attention goes, energy flows and things grow. Focus your attention on the things you want to see grow.
  • Form a mastermind group with individuals of like minds with a common goal.

From one semester to the next

Today is my last C++ class as well as my last class for the semester. It is indeed a bitter sweet feeling. I’m sad it’s over because I really enjoyed this class and the interaction with the students but no classes for the month of December means a little additional rest for my body even though I’ll be busy marking assignments and papers. I look forward to classes in the next semester. I haven’t finalised my courses just yet but I’ve discussed lecturing Design Patterns with Java and Computer Logic. I’ve never lectured these modules before so I’m really excited, more so for the Design Patterns course as I’ve covered these in my MSc using C++ and Objective-C. It’s going to be so much fun teaching design patterns using Java next semester.

A helping hand

Yesterday during my Java class, I took a water break and a walk down the corridor. Not too far from my class, I met 3 students from my C++ class who were working on a presentation for their Health & Safety class on Health, Safety and Environmental Hazards at one of the University’s other campuses. They were sitting in the corridor trying to complete this assignment, so I invited them to use the computers at the back of my Java class to complete their work. When my Java class ended, I enquired about the nature of the project and if they needed any assistance. I know they are not extremely proficient in Microsoft Powerpoint so I offered to help them put the project together. While working on the presentation, we noticed some grammatical errors in the main document which was initially submitted. I suggested they correct those errors and submit a printed copy to the lecturer before the presentation. While I had work scheduled for last night after my class, sometimes it’s good to be a bit selfless. I knew it would have taken them a lot longer to complete the Powerpoint presentation had I not provided some assistance. They were indeed grateful and I hope they do well in the presentation this afternoon. I’ll take a few minutes away from my Java class and pop in their class for a few minutes to see how the presentation goes.