You won't believe what happened at the Knoxville Railsbridge!

So, let me apologize for the clickbait title but… It worked. :smile:

Now that you are here I want to share one of the best experiences I’ve had thus far in my development career and issue a challenge to my Upcase friends.

This weekend Dustin Beason from Rails Machine and I co-hosted Knoxville’s first Railsbridge workshop. At the end of the day, we turned 12 new Rails scholars loose on the world.

I’ve always enjoyed sharing my knowledge with others but I’ve rarely had the chance to work with folks this new, and let me tell you, it’s unbelievably rewarding!

The students were fantastic! Everyone had a great time and the the enthusiasm when things clicked, well…

That’s great Dave but…
##Why The Need for a Post?##

I want to issue a challenge to my Upcase compatriots to help a few folks take their first steps as a developer. It’s not near as hard as you might think and being an Upcase member, I assure you that you have more than enough knowledge.

If you are in a major tech hub, there is probably a Railsbridge group already in your area so your job is easy. Just reach out to be a TA for the next event and the organizers will get you set.

My main challenge, however, are for those of you who are not in a major hub and don’t have an existing Railsbridge community. Guess what, I want you to be the one to make it!

Here are a few steps to get the ball rolling:

  1. Decide to do it. Once you have committed to the idea, no backing out!
  2. Involve the community. I hope you are already a member of your local meetup but if not, now is the time to get out there! Don’t limit yourself to Ruby communities either. There are plenty of .Net, Javascript, and Wordpress devs around who would love a nice chat about Ruby! An added perk is getting to know all the other awesome dev’s in your area!
  3. Find a location. Once you know a few meetup groups it should be easy to find a location to host the workshop. (Hint: It’s probably where they are meeting now.)
  4. Register and create your event at They provide the full curriculum with multiple options so content is easy!
  5. Share your workshop with everyone and get ready for a great time!

Of course there is a little more to it but honestly, that’s the bulk of the work. If you live in an area with a surrounding population of greater than 100k, I think you can pull off solid attendance and a great workshop with no problem.

Additionally, I am available to anyone who wants to take the plunge. Any help I can offer is yours for the taking!

So What’s In It for Me?##

I’m glad you asked!

  1. It’s crazy rewarding!
  2. You get to reinforce your own knowledge. (If you ever want to really know something, teach it!)
  3. It’s crazy rewarding!
  4. You’ll meet awesome people, make great friends, and be looked to as a leader in the community.

Right now I hope you’re like

So, I’ll leave you to it. I hope you take me up on this challenge. I am pretty sure you’ll be glad you did!


P.S. Remember to hit me up for any help you need to make this happen!

I’ve been a Railsbridge TA in the past and really enjoyed it.

@gabe_bw / @gabe helped organize this year. He might have some things to add.

Awesome! I would love to get some thoughts and tips from @gabe! :thumbsup:

We are already planning our next Railsbridge so it would be great to hear from other organizers as to what their experiences were and things that worked well for them.