CO:working Spaces and How To Explain Them

CO:working Spaces and How To Explain Them

If you ask anyone at theCO what the hardest part of their job is, most would likely answer, “explaining theCO to people who have no idea what it is.” Even though that seems trivial, coworking spaces are relatively new, especially to the United States. It wasn’t until 2005 that Brad Neuberg named and created the San Francisco Coworking Space, and even then, the idea wasn’t popular. It took a few months for people to catch on and utilize the space. Now there are just shy of 4,600 coworking spaces in the United States, and still it can be a hard concept to explain.

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Dev Catalyst Students at theCOtoberfest

Dev Catalyst Students at theCOtoberfest

theCO held its fourth annual theCOtoberfest at the end of October. The event featured a Fortune 500 Teller Booth, Maker Demos, CO:bots students, and the CO.STARTERS Showcase. But the booth that seemed to have the most traffic was the Raspberry Pi(e) Booth set up by Dev Catalyst. Throughout the day, kids of all ages entertained themselves by practicing their coding skills and interacting with Raspberry Pis.

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CO.STARTERS Spotlight: Will Lovelady

CO.STARTERS Spotlight: Will Lovelady

Will Lovelady was at a conference last fall in Philadelphia when he rubbed shoulders with a professor from his undergrad years. Since this was Lovelady’s first time at a conference like this one, he was feeling a little out of his comfort zone and asked the professor what he normally does when he travels for conferences. And that is how Lovelady ended up at a cigar bar in downtown Philadelphia, talking with a man he had known from years previous.

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Art Collective

Art Collective

Suzanah Furtick came to Jackson with her husband two years ago, after his job relocation, and she brought with her the hope and intention of developing the art community in the city. As a quilter, and former professor at Memphis College of Art, Suzanah knows the sweet familiarity of fellowship that art can bring. Disheartened by the seeming lack of art company, she began the CO.STARTERS program in the beginning of May to learn more about the business side of being an artist, and also learn how to create a center or group for local Jackson artists. Along the way, she met like-minded artists, and by the end of August, she had put together a meetup at theCO called “Art Collective.” The first meeting had over 30 attendees, further proving there are artists in Jackson also seeking community. And Suzanah had delivered.

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CO.STARTERS Spotlight: Kingdom Concierge

CO.STARTERS Spotlight: Kingdom Concierge

When most people think about planning a trip to Disney, they instantly feel overwhelmed. After all, there are a lot of details to consider. Alison Weaver saw an opportunity to apply her experience and expertise by establishing Kingdom Concierge, a company who will plan your magical trip for free.


Alison had an abundance of Disney knowledge but a shortage of how-to-operate-a-business knowledge. She turned to CO.STARTERS for help.

According to Alison, “CO.STARTERS gave me the confidence that I lacked as a business owner.” She attributes her business’ growth to her time with like-minded classmates and helpful teachers.

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Member Spotlight: Marie Flowers

Member Spotlight: Marie Flowers

theCO sees a lot of fresh faces coming through the front doors, bringing ideas and innovation. The Flowers family joined theCO in July, and has since been creating wooden products in the makerspace. Marie Flowers started her business “Moore Unique Products” with her fiance, Joseph Moore in May, which quickly became her full time job along with being the mom of Brennan and Alana, who also play a part in production.

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Dev Catalyst Teachers On Improved Classrooms

Dev Catalyst Teachers On Improved Classrooms

theCO’s program, Dev Catalyst, annually hosts a competition for local students who are interested in coding and robotics. Throughout the course of the program, nearly 800 students participated in one of three categories (Novice Web Development, Advanced Web Development, and Data Development) in order to learn teamwork skills, develop professional skills, network with tech professionals, and hopefully win the grand prize trip to San Francisco, California.

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Board Member Spotlight: Austin Thompson

Board Member Spotlight: Austin Thompson

Austin Thompson is one of the four recently appointed board members at theCO, serving alongside Beth Wilson, Andre Gist, and Kevin Adelsberger. But Austin’s board membership is just the newest thing he has done at theCO. He is the CEO of Thompson Industries, which he conducts out of theCO, specializing in social media marketing and small business consulting. Austin’s side hustle turned business number 2, Random Pieces of Wood, is also run out of theCO, where he makes and sells laser engraved gifts. Austin has lead multiple Meetups; his newest one being “Vets in Business,” where he looks to develop a community for veterans and provide them with personal or entrepreneurial resources.

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Jackson Escape Rooms Recommends CO.STARTERS

Jackson Escape Rooms Recommends CO.STARTERS

“When we started Jackson Escape Rooms in the spring of 2015, we had no idea what we were doing. Frankly, we had no business being in business.” Lee Wilson, owner of Jackson Escape Rooms, attributes much of his business success to his time in CO.STARTERS.

Lee and his team had just completed a three week pop up version of Jackson Escape Rooms. They faced an interesting dilemma - huge success. According to Lee, “we had all this success we never anticipated. No knowledge. No information. No way of knowing what to do next.”

So he began to search for something to help him during this strange crisis. He found out about CO.STARTERS and decided to participate.

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