Jackson native builds tech hub downtown
JACKSON, Miss. — A Capital City native is bringing something new and innovative to downtown Jackson.
Dr. Nashlie Sephus is an engineer for Amazon. "I was driving one day in December of 2018, and I passed by the barn building to my right, which I loved, even growing up, I loved the barn building. We got into some conversations, I found out who the owner was, and I found out that owner also owned both sides of the street," Sephus said. She bought a 12-acre lot along Gallatin Street worth $25 million. Sephus said, "I told them I want to create a tech hub in her hometown to advance economy, build financial stability, train young people for the workforce and bridge the gap between nearby Jackson State and the central business district."
Full construction is expected to start at the first of the year, with some work as soon as the next few months.
In addition to a hub for technology, there will be lofts and retail space as well as programs for young people.
"In terms of high school students and kids, we want to help train them in very advanced technology topics like artificial intelligence, cyber security, software development, all sorts of things," Sephus said.
The Amazon engineer is a Murrah High School and Mississippi State University graduate. She started a tech company that she later sold to Amazon. She also founded The Bean Path in Jackson in 2018. They provide technical advice and guidance for people and small businesses in the community.
The Bean Path will have a two-year anniversary drive-thru event on the grounds of the new tech hub on Gallatin Street Saturday, Oct. 17, from 10:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Sixty backpacks, Chromebooks and other tech prizes will be given away.