Economic development through VR education
Social entrepreneurship has been defined in a number of ways. One definition says that social entrepreneurs drive social innovation and transformation in various fields including education, health, environment and enterprise development. They pursue poverty alleviation goals with entrepreneurial zeal, business methods and the courage to innovate and overcome traditional practices. A social entrepreneur, similar to a business entrepreneur, builds strong and sustainable organizations, which are either set up as not-for-profits or companies.
For-profit entrepreneurs typically measure performance using business metrics like profit, revenues and increases in stock prices, but social entrepreneurs are either non-profits or blend for-profit goals with generating a positive "return to society" and therefore must use different metrics.
Here at Lobaki, social entrepreneurship is the core tenant of our organization. We have partnered with a non-profit to create a VR Academy in an area of the country, Clarksdale, Mississippi, that was unlikely to see one for a decade, if ever, and we have established our for-profit VR Production Studio in the same town to provide graduates of the VR Academy a local opportunity to put their learned skills and capabilities to work. We are providing underprivileged and underserved high school and community college students the opportunities to learn and work with the very latest technology on the planet. These students are getting direct exposure to the latest technology advancements, and provided with a pathway to pursue a career in tech related businesses. Lobaki is helping them find their place in the VR development world, which may be right here in their hometown of Clarksdale, but could be anywhere in the world where this technology is being developed and used. The VR Academy is teaching the tools and techniques used by VR Production Studios world-wide. With the help of local partnerships, these students will also learn what it means to be an entrepreneur themselves and could go on to create their own businesses here in Clarksdale.
Clarksdale is just the start though. The entire region known as the Mississippi Delta, Home of the Blues and America’s Music, needs an economic development boost. It is widely considered that Virtual Reality technology and applications are where web technology was in the early 90s and smartphones in the early 2000s. If the region as a whole can take advantage of this emerging marketplace early on, it can find itself becoming one of the leading tech hubs in the country.