My Projects

Here, at the start I will be taking on four separate projects:

1 – BlueSkies collaboration (Social project)

Basics: A social enterprise with its main focus being to bring together the ‘brains’ of the wildlife conservation academia people, with the ‘hands’; the wildlife conservation organisations working in the field around the world. The initial way I intend to do this is through a series of events that bring together professionals and academics in Cambridge, and encourage collaboration on solving specific problems that have been brought to us from other organisations that are in need of advice.

My motivation: for starting this is that when I first decided to consider taking the path of entrepreneurship I was told to follow paths that cross paths with my own passions. As I’m only starting off now I’m not looking to make big bucks, but to experience what it takes to lead new ventures, and learn from it. Therefore I thought I’d get my passion on bringing together people to help in the struggle to conserve many of the world’s species and ecosystems.

Vision for the future: If BSc were to become successful I would envision it as a professional organisation that a great diversity of international conservation organisations that work in the field are confident in approaching our team/network, stating a problem that requires knowledge/experience from others. BSc, with its established network is either able to connect these organisations with the appropriate academic/professionals, or is able to mediate between the two.

What support to I have?: From attending a social enterprise workshop at Enterprise Tuesday at the Engineering school, University of Cambridge (http://www.cfel.jbs.cam.ac.uk/programmes/enterprisetuesday/), I met Neil Primm – an Executive Coach at Future Business (http://www.futurebusiness.co.uk). As part of a government scheme he is able to offer me 12 free advisory sessions to get this project off the ground. We have met twice to discuss the basics and plan my first pilot event.

2 – A game based on teaching and instructing mental well-being (Game project)

Basics:  Until the V1 product is launched the game won’t be described in detail. I will, however divulge the full process from idea, to recruitment, funding, marketing, and launch. As I write this I am very much pushing off the starting blocks so it may help people with similar ideas trying to get the momentum going.

Motivation: Along with a growing portion of people in the UK I’ve come across depression and anxiety in various ways. Thanks to a lot of things I got to grips with it in good time and one of the thanks for this goes out to – https://moodgym.anu.edu.au/welcome – helping people to understand their thought processes  better and how to see things in a different light to get you closer to the life you want to live and reduce levels of depression and anxiety. This sort of thing isn’t the key to happiness but it’s kind of like the omega-3 supplement for your thoughts as I see it. I thought I can produce something with a similar effect but more engaging and user-friendly for the public.

Vision: If this were to take off I would see it being successful as a web game recommended by professionals in the field, or an app that can be downloaded by the public for a relatively low price.

Support: Fortunately in Cambridge there is a huge wealth and diversity of mental health professionals, game designers, and programmers. For the mental health side of things I’ve been meeting with professionals face to face and asking their opinion on the idea and how they think it could work if possible. For finding the programmers etc I’ve been using a mixture of http://www.meetup.com events (very useful for networking), contacts made at Cambridge University’s enterprise Tuesday (http://www.cfel.jbs.cam.ac.uk/programmes/enterprisetuesday/), and random people I met at flat viewings!
Now this process is not cheap so how have I been/will I be funding it? Well my day job savings aren’t exactly throwing the banks any bones but they’re doing for now. I have just been accepted onto the Rockstar Youth program (http://www.rockstaryouth.co.uk/); this is a government-funded organisation that provides low-interest loans up to 10k and an accomplished entrepreneurial mentor specific to your field of interest to advise you throughout the development, marketing and sales process.

3 – Novel-type app for Cambridge sightseeing (App project)

Basics: Again full disclosure cannot be given at this point but a small team of us will be developing a new app for sightseeing in Cambridge for a certain untapped niche. We hope this will bring in revenue through sales and local advertisements. As we have worked out this project will do no more than pay the bills at best but we’re excited to see how it goes..and I get extra experience!

Motivation: The key motivator here is experience! Growing up in Cambridge I worked as a tour guide so I have a lot of experience to bring to the team.

Vision: We see this app being very successful very quickly as it immediately meets a demand not yet sated. If successful we would see this app spreading to other cities around the UK.

Support: This project needs no funding as everything required will be provided within the team. Any costs for future marketing (we’re aiming for very low) will be coming out of the piggy bank.

4 – My music!! (Personal project)

Basics: At heart I’m nothing but a low-life musician. I’ve always enjoyed the safety of my kitchen when the washer’s on, or an open mic where everyone’s too pissed to shout abuse but since I’ve been thinking about doing these projects I decided why not give this a go to. So I’m now in a gigging blues band round Cambridge as lead guitar/singer on some songs called Smoken Joes (http://www.smokenjoes.co.uk/). I’m also an acoustic singer/songwriter attempting my first album and hopefully getting some gigs in the future (https://soundcloud.com/blueskiesjem)

Motivation: it’s my first love, I enjoy doing it, I feel very comfortable doing it, and since a kid always aspired to be like Jimi H or to perform at the Cambridge Folk Festival one da.

Vision: I’m hoping that I will be able to get to the point where I’ll be doing at least one or two paid gigs every week and have a following for my songwriting of 500+ people. If I am able to make any kind of living from this I’ll be pretty chuffed.

Support: Being in a band means I have a lot less to do. Our bassist and singer find most of the gigs and make the merchandise, organise recording studios etc. In terms of my own music I don’t have much support. I’m going to be hopefully using the same guy who recorded the demo EP for Smoken Joes, paying out of my pocket, and then sending it to every pub, club, pigeon, radio station in the area and try to rustle up some interest.

So these are my four projects I’ll be working on at the start. These projects may develop, evolve, come, or go, and you’ll get to see how they develop. They do seem a bit random yes, and many of them maybe pointless to the untrained eye, but I believe the experience I gain from each and every one of these steps I take will act as a platform for the next opportunity. And if these combined can pay the bills and allow me to continue to buy Koi Carp and post them to strangers then I’ll be damn happy I made this choice. If not then at last you guys will have learned something from this!

Anyone doing anything similar/has questions/has an opinion feel free to comment or get in contact. I’ll do my best to reply.

Happy venturing!

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