Wed | Sep 18, 2019

J’can selected for annual Google Connect Live conference

Published:Tuesday | July 16, 2019 | 12:14 AMNickoy Wilson/Gleaner Writer
Mijan Morgan, the first Jamaican selected to attend Google’s Connect Live 2019 conference in its three-year history.
Mijan Morgan, the first Jamaican selected to attend Google’s Connect Live 2019 conference in its three-year history.

Mijan Morgan, the first Jamaican selected to attend Google’s Connect Live 2019 conference in its three-year history, said that given the competitiveness and limited number of spaces, being selected as one of 200 local guides to participate in the event has been a dream come true.

Connect Live is an annual conference that gives Local Guides an all-expenses-paid trip to participate in various activities and to provide direct feedback to Google employees on products. Local Guides is a global community of explorers who write reviews, share photos, answer questions, add or edit places, and check facts on Google Maps.

“So I was feeling down and talking to a co-worker, absent-mindedly checking my phone, when a notification went off and it was an email from Google … . I checked and it said, ‘You’re in’. ... And if I was not at work, somebody downtown would hear me scream,” said Morgan, who is a level seven Local Guide.

“I had to go on the Google Live Connect platform, which is just like a Facebook platform for all the Local Guides and I saw persons putting up their acceptance and it felt so surreal ‘cause I’m saying, ‘Poor, little me being invited by Google to attend a conference.’ It’s the fourth year they are keeping the conference, and what were the odds? I see a lot more experienced guides all over the world – level 10 and so on – and they applied and they didn’t get through,” Morgan said.

Speaking to The Gleaner on Sunday, the 26-year-old, who describes herself as “very driven”, said that being a Local Guide gives her the opportunity to help others.

“Whether it’s businesses – to know how customers are experiencing their visits or other customers wanting to spend their money to know that this is a good place to come and this is what to expect or this is not worth your hard-earned bucks. And that whole space allows me to be more of me, help persons who I don’t know. Google Maps has given me that platform to help others,” she said.

This year’s conference is being held in San José, California, from November 12 to 15.

nickoy.wilson@gleanerjm.com