i.c.stars partners with custom software development firm, Geneca, to promote reflection, redefine journaling, and inspire action.

March 21, 2013—Chicago, IL—In April, a new group of i.c.stars interns will arrive at the studio on 415 North Dearborn Street—a place they will spend 60–80 hours each week for the next four months. While going through an intense training program in the fast-changing, ever-evolving IT industry, they will be learning a reflection process that matches the speed of that change. Geneca, a custom software development firm that prides itself on “making software development predictable”, and as a sponsor of i.c.stars, is sharing a technology they built in-house to better prepare the i.c.stars interns for success in their technology careers. Using the Joornal tool and the process of “objective journaling” only takes 30 seconds a day.

Joel Basgall, Geneca’s CEO, developed the process as a way to simplify his journaling experience, make it more meaningful, and bring it into alignment with his goals. As an avid journaler, he would frequently write down his thoughts. “Just look around my office,” Basgall said, “and you’ll see dozens of journals. Unfortunately, they have one thing in common: They don’t tell me anything. While my journals may have been a good way to get things off my chest, as far as helping me understand and adjust my behavior, I have to admit they hold little value.” But Basgall was determined to change all that. Determined to take the unrelated and unimportant items in his life and replace them with a simpler, faster process that kept him on track to achieving his goals. He called the process, “objective journaling.”

“Objective Journaling is about tracking the things that are most meaningful to you,” Basgall said. “It’s precise, fast, and can be done with a spreadsheet, online or even a mobile app.…What I love most about my journal are the clues I get early on that things are either humming along nicely or I need to change something.”

That change is important not only for senior leaders like Basgall, but for entry-level technology talent as well. With that in mind, Basgall and Joneasha Snow, a Genecian and an i.c.stars alum from Cycle 14, sat down with Deborah Cane, i.c.stars’s training program manager, to share with her how the process works. “Joornal is a useful tool,” Cane said, “that will help our interns determine what’s important to them. What’s most meaningful? What’s their legacy? What do they want to measure?” And in doing so, it will put them on par with leaders at one of Chicago’s fastest-growing software development firms.”

For more on Objective Journaling and the Joornal tool, visit http://www.geneca.com/warp-your-journal/.

A Measurable Impact

Initial placement rate:
90%
Industry retention rate:
81%
College attendance rate:
55%
Alumni actively engaged in their communities:
72%
Average 12-month earnings before program:
$10,790
Average 12-month earnings after program:
$44,010