Summer Break In A Prague Startup

Last summer I had a chance to be a developer working on project Jack.cz. It was a great opportunity and I feel that I need to write something about it to maybe inspire someone to follow their dreams. Because I followed them while working for a startup.

I am a high school student right now. In my first year of high school, I fell in love with technology and my experience and knowledge in this area started to expand really fast at that time. After three years of growing and some experience as a front-end developer, I got my yet best opportunity last summer when I asked my friend, about some summer job and he gives me contact to one guy from Techsquat. He told me about what they do and asked what I would like to do. After a few days I moved to Prague to Techsquat as a front-end developer.

First thing first. When I got there it was morning and I was tired and I met all the people for the first time. I thought I will be scared, they are all older than me and I had doubts about myself and my experience. But when I got there I wasn’t scared I felt like I actually follow my past dreams now because I always wanted to work for a startup. To try how it is and it was freaking awesome. I’ve got there my first experience in doing wireframes and UX design even if I mainly did front-end development. Working for a startup is more about putting yourself into product than it is in a big company. Even if you did not start the startup and you just develop their application or service. That’s the thing I love about startups.

At first I felt in Prague like a tourist. I didn’t know the places there and everything was new (I knew just few places before). But Prague is not that big after all and I got used to after a few days. It was the summer of first times and that really got me thinking about what else can I do and what can I achieve in my life.

I spend one night at PragueCrunch (by TechCrunch). There were a lot of startup people talking about changing the world. Everybody was interested in making it a better place to live in. I have even met the designer of Tesla cars Otto Fabri at the STRV party! I’m really excited about it. One day we had a party in our apartment where I met some people that I actually knew before I get this opportunity. They were surprised that I’m there. I was the youngest person at the party and I thought I would be an outsider there. It was different, I was talking all night with everyone about everything. Everyone was so interesting and I just felt that I have so many things to learn. And even if that party was to have fun, I did learn a lot.

Another great (sometimes awful) thing was that there were people filming a documentary movie while I worked there. They filmed us work, eat and getting to sleep. It was a pretty hectic time, but it was a lot of fun. Sometimes we had to film a scene few times so it wasn’t actually authentic all the time. I’m happy for this new experience.

On one sunny Sunday I was walking through Prague, just chilling around national museum. I was just going back to Techsquat but suddenly it started to rain. I was forced to cover under a bridge in the park. Some people were there with me. There was also one cute girl that was also covering herself and smiling. So I started to speak with her. She told me that she is a Russian web designer and she is here in Prague for the summer. I spend with her the rest of the day talking about everything. I was impressed by the fact you can really get to know foreign people in IT all around the Prague and actually talk to them about all the stuff you wanted to know. I started to walk around Prague more often after that day meeting more people from different countries around the world. Just in Prague.

I got a chance to be a support at my colleague’s presentation at Czech Technical University in Prague. The project was named Summer IT School and it was for ladies only. The presentation was for girls that wanted to know IT a little better than they teach them in their schools. It is an awesome project because I don’t usually see women in this area so I suppose there are not many ladies in IT. I haven’t done a lot talking, but when I did I was talking about my main focus and that is front-end development. The whole presentation was about Arduino and that they can easily make a web application that can control an Arduino through the internet. Those girls were great and I get to know some of them. Women are not in IT just because of stereotypes and not because they can’t do that. I would be really happy to see more ladies working in technology.

Yes, I learned a lot. And not just about development, but about life. It was yet the most exciting time of my life and every day and night was filled with some new experiences. I liked also walking around Prague with my new friends there and talking about stuff that we are not talking about with my peers. I think I’m never going to stop expanding my knowledge. There is too much to learn that I’m never going to know everything, but it’s ok. It’s about having a great team. One can do almost anything big without the help of others. And great people around are the most precious thing anyone can have.

Two years ago I didn’t even think that I’ll get a chance like this one but I got it. It’s about continuous learning and pushing your limit as hard as you possibly can. Every problem can be solved and you have to just figure out how and then make it true.

Follow your dreams even if they are not real in that time. After few days, weeks or months it can change and your dreams may come true if you are working on that thing you want to achieve.