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Zcash Education Outreach #10

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techoluwoye opened this Issue Sep 11, 2017 · 26 comments

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@techoluwoye

techoluwoye commented Sep 11, 2017

Zcash Proposal:

Coincentrix Capital is a newly formed Blockchain investment and research group, focused on the trading and education of digital cryptocurrencies, and the development of the Blockchain ecosystem. Our team at Coincentrix Capital is composed of Bitcoin certified professionals and experienced cryptocurrency investment and research analysts. The Zcash Foundation Grant provides an opportunity to expand education efforts for outreach among university students to inform them on the fundamentals of blockchain and privacy driven innovations. Considering the Zcash project has delivered prosperous results leading in full anonymous decentralized blockchain technology, we would like to educate users on its ongoing use cases and privacy driven innovations.

Motivation and overview

Our motivation is clear. We want to educate the masses on Zcash and Blockchain technologies!
As college students, our team majored in areas such as computer science, engineering, and marketing but did not realize the value of bitcoin and digital cryptocurrencies until after we graduated. We now realize that leveraging our diverse educational institutions, provide us with access to developing minds that further the field of the blockchain ecosystem and digital cryptocurrencies.

Linda Lee 2017-08-21 Zcash blog post : https://z.cash/technology/cryptocurrency-ux-challenges.html mentions challenges associated with ux but the challegnes mentioned in this post are also applicable to the current state of Zcash aswell as other digital crytocurrencies as a whole.
Below are the challenges and actions related to Zcash and digital cryptocurrencies mentioned in Linda’s article that we plan to address and action upon:
Challenges:
· Using cryptocurrency requires knowledge of cryptocurrency.
· Cryptocurrencies are hard to use
What we can do about it:
· Educate users about the benefits of using cryptocurrency
· Educate users about cryptocurrency concepts.

The “What we can do about it” points listed go parallel with our goals we have set for this project. Our goal is identify potential Zcash users and young college developers and provide them with the fundamental knowledge required for them to cultivate value in the Zcash ecosystem. This includes educating the public through workshops and marketing strategies on Blockchain technologies, advantages to digital cryptocurrencies, and the practical application of Zcash. Thus, creating an outlet for increased Zcash use and community involvement that can increase the functionality of Zcash for the average person. We plan to educate the public by developing workshops and leveraging several educational institutions that will provide us with a venue to target various students in a variety of departments such as computer science and engineering and community members especially business owners allowing us to garner interest to

  1. educate individuals on Zcash fundamentals;
  2. increase development of the Zcash platform; and
  3. finally establishing Zcash ambassadors within universities to sustain and increase interest of Zcash and potential users.

Technical approach
Goals for this project will be achieved by:

(1) Leveraging existing relationships at educational institutions based on prior workshops provided to students and community members that addressed Bitcoin fundamentals.
(2) Conduct pre- and post-test surveys to examine the level of Zcash literacy before and after workshops.
(3) Develop programs encompassing of free Zcash educative courses and workshops, a with the main objective of tackling challenges identified from the survey data.
(4) Conduct pilot program at selected university
(5) Optimizing program per result of the pilot program

Team background and qualifications
After my poster presentation in Atlanta GA at Emory University's 2016 STEM Research and Career Symposium, it was clear that the education and adoption factors were still a challenge to tackle, and project efforts and community development were of instant need to aid the blockchain ecosystem. After confirmation of those factors the creation of lectures titled “Blockchain & Digital Crypto Cryptocurrencies” were created with the help of Pascal Ntsama and Anthony Robinson to help students and young professionals understand blockchain education initiatives at a grassroots level. With the guidance and network of Dr. Xiang Zhao and other professors at A&M I presented at 4 Universities 2 in the United States and 2 in Nigeria. Below is a Linkedin article in January 2017 to expand my efforts and detail my quick thoughts.
https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/2017-technology-trend-buzzword-blockchain-oyedeji-oluwoye
After creating a legal structure for centralizing my ideas and working within the blockchain space, Coincentrix Capital, I am at devoting and leading the education outreach sector to continuing the grassroots effort and expand adoption of blockchain technologies.

Oyedeji Oluwoye – Project Lead
Senior Specialist-Network Planning Engineer at AT&T
Master of Science Degree in Computer Science from Alabama A&M University
Master's Thesis: “Digital Cryptocurrencies: The Design and Network Analysis of the Bitcoin Infrastructure.”
Bachelors of Science Degree in Computer Science from Alabama A&M University
Presentations

Pascal IV Ntsama – Education Material Developer
RAN Design Engineer at AT&T Mobility
Bachelors of Science Degree in Electrical Engineering from Georgia Institute of Technology
Certification

  • Bitcoin Certified Professional - CryptoCurrency Certification Consortium
    Other
    Founder of Cameroonian Youth Empowerment (CYE) non-profit organization

Dr. Xiang Zhao – Alabama A&M University Faculty Liaison
Professor in the Department of Programing and Computer Science
Head of Alabama A&M University Computer Science Club

Anthony Robinson - Marketing Coordinator
Regional Marketing Supervisor NW at The McDonalds Corporation
Bachelors of Arts Degree from Tennessee State University
Other
Project Coordination Glenn Anthony Homeless Project
Creator of Gold Plated Event Planning Group

Evaluation plan

Grant Review Committee and/or other community members will be able to evaluate project success based on recorded visuals of the events created and social media updates through such platforms like Medium , Linkedin , Twitter and Facebook for recaps and posts.
With a goal to increase the adoption of Zcash, a Zcash wallet creation tracker will be introduced to collect all available data on new wallets created and zcash transfers within the project between the audience to produce Quantifiable metrics. Additional any media coverage will be saved for records.

Security considerations

Implications of this project to the privacy, integrity, availability and decentralization of Zcash will be affected in a positive view with availability being a key focus. Community awareness will increase to the masses that have not been exposed to Blockchain technology and they will now see Zcash as the first option when thinking of the space. Education is a fundamental, knowledge of the Zcash project will in a capacity increase security measures taken by users to insure basic attacks on their wallets will be prevented. Pre- and post-test surveys will be anonymous and participants will not be asked to provide any identifying or personal information.

Schedule
zcashschedule

Budget and Justification

We project a budget of $7,500 USD for the US workshops. An additional $5000 will be requested if success is proven in the US to produce workshops on the African continent. Funds are requested for travel, salary, printing and postage, marketing strategies, and small projects we will like to create to help aid the adoption of the Zcash ecosystem.
Travel is requested for Team members to travel between the states of Alabama, Georgia , Washington & Tennessee, to manage study start up activities, conduct workshops,, and to administer and collect surveys at venue sites.
Total budget allocated to travel: $1500

Printing and Postage
Funds are requested to pay for printing and postage costs for marketing campaigns for recruitment and procedures and workshop materials. Funds also requested for T-shirt printing. $1,500 is requested for these cost to conduct the proposed work.
Participant’s Compensation
Participants/students will be compensated with free Zcash via demos,transaction demonstrations and for their time with refreshments. Total amount of $ 1000 (2 workshops x $ 1000) in funds are requested. $2,000 is requested for these total costs

Teams Compensation & Development
As a team we have several ideas to create small but valuable Zcash related apps for aiding the Zcash ecosystem. We will like a budget of $1000 to incentivize student projects and hire external programmers to deliver simple solutions. We will also allocate $1500 worth out of Zcash to the 4 team members as compensation for time and dedication.

African continent
With workshops 1 & 2 analyzed and community follow-up completed pertaining on results we will like to take the workshop to the country of Nigeria for a follow up to the US sector to see how the materials and results are applied to computer science students in a developing country. With Blockchain technologies and Zcash in the infant stages could the education provided thrive in an environment that needs implementations such as remittance applications and layer 2 protocols on top other there massive mobile phone adoption? We will like to see this outcome in other regions of the world. If results and success are proven an additional amount of $5,000 USD will be requested to do a follow up in Nigeria.

@pascalEiv

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pascalEiv commented Sep 14, 2017

Please can we get some feedback prior to the full submission ?

@tromer tromer added the outreach label Sep 15, 2017

@mineZcash

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mineZcash commented Oct 2, 2017

@techoluwoye Could you please provide a table of costs similar to the timeline you provided. I'm not clear on the amounts you are requesting, for instance you mention $5000 for African/Nigerian outreach twice in the text.

@ioptio

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ioptio commented Oct 2, 2017

Seems like a concrete plan for the first iteration and I second the question asked by @mineZcash above. Perhaps a more sustainable model would produce an open blueprint/guideline for others to mimic this process in their local areas. This way the education could expand faster than what the initial team has capacity for.

@pascalEiv

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pascalEiv commented Oct 2, 2017

@mineZcash & @ioptio Thank you for the feedback. We will revisit our model to ensure its can flexible and expandable. Plus, we will include the details of the amount we are saking. Thank you all.

@techoluwoye

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techoluwoye commented Oct 3, 2017

@mineZcash & @ioptio Thank you for your feedback! I had a meeting with Dr.Zhao last night to discuss the feedback and project scope. We agreed to exclude the African component to focus on the US workshops as a pilot. @mineZcash updated table of costs similar to the timeline we provided will be added to the final submission. Thanks again.

@acityinohio

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Collaborator

acityinohio commented Oct 4, 2017

Every informal proposal has multiple reviews by the review committee. The reviews are being collected and discussed in a private google doc (the 5 reviewers all have edit access to it, no one else can view it). By way of early, informal feedback, the reviewers have made a list of projects that they consider leading candidates for grant funding.

In that vein, your project was selected as one of the leading candidates, and the review committee encourages you to submit a full proposal by October 6th and looks forward to reviewing it.

@techoluwoye

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techoluwoye commented Oct 6, 2017

Attached below is our official proposal. Thanks @mineZcash @ioptio @acityinohio for the feedback and comments!
Zcash Submission.pdf

@amiller

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Contributor

amiller commented Oct 26, 2017

Hi all, for the proposals involving outreach and communications, I solicited an additional external review from Allen Gunn ("Gunner") from AspirationTech https://aspirationtech.org/about/people/gunner His time was limited, so this took place over a 30 minute phone call, and I'm posting a summary based on the notes I took (with Gunner's permission).

Of the three proposals we discussed, Gunner was most enthusiastic about this one. The conversation focused on these two points:

  1. Every communications or outreach campaign should identify its target audience, who the communication is intended to reach, and what the goals are and why. This proposal is explicit in identifying its audience (members of the public, university students) and stating its goals (understanding of Zcash & cryptocurrency fundamentals / literacy)

  2. This proposal includes a realistic process for iterative improvement and collecting feedback. Pilots and surveys allow the organizers to evaluate what worked and so to focus improvements and include that in the next version. This makes the process more "replicable" and likely to succeed.

Gunner noted however that this proposal seems to be missing a detailed communication/distribution plan, which I understood as meaning, what marketing steps will be taken prior to the workshops/events to make sure the target audience knows about the event?

Hope this is helpful. Any errors in writing this up are due to my note-taking errors, and take it with a grain of salt this was my best effort at transcribing an informal discussion!

@techoluwoye

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techoluwoye commented Oct 26, 2017

Thank you for the comments @amiller , we appreciate your feedback! We (Coincentrix) have in place representatives at 4 universities, Alabama A&M University, Georgia Tech(Atlanta, GA), Howard Univeristy(Washington DC) and Tennessee State University to help address the positive feedback from Mr. Gunn. “what marketing steps will be taken prior to the workshops/events to make sure the target audience knows about the event?”

We have strategies in place by utilizing our continuing relationships via popular social groups, public relation departments and alumni networks to pull students and local business owners to attend these events. Social groups sending the vocal and visual message across as they have done with similar campus activities is one way as well as utilizing the alumni network in conjunction with the schools public relations department to send emails and alerts through their contact and email lists to attract local businesses is another.

The second component of our marketing strategy which we believe we value highly is online advertisement, we plan to target the popular social media platforms common to college students to promote the event to the masses. Through this medium we can reach other college students within the perimeter of where the event will occur. With (Coincentrix) having representatives at 4 universities we will like to kick start our Campus Ambassadors program to assist with advertising for the workshops via online tools/platforms too.

As we have been discussing innovative ways to ensure workshop success another direction was to reach out to the new public figures that have recently engaged the digital cryptocurrencies ecosystem.With identifiable speakers included in the workshop in some capacity the crowd can now have a better preconceived view on the content of the event intact due to a public figure giving back to his/her community by mentioning their experiences or offering their viewpoints on the space etc.

All strategies mentioned above we believe target the audience to be informed of the events and will bring success to the overall project. All strategies above are not our final marketing steps as will are still in the process of cultivating our ideas with the leadership of Anthony Robinson but these are the identified core steps that we think will yield the most success as of today.

@acityinohio

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Collaborator

acityinohio commented Nov 21, 2017

@techoluwoye : I'm thrilled to inform you that the Grant Review committee—and the Zcash Foundation board—has tentatively approved your proposal! While the recommendations are already posted, we are planning to make a more public post tomorrow morning (November 21st) Pacific Standard Time.

Next steps: please email me josh [at] z.cash.foundation with an email address suitable as a point of contact. Due to our newfound 501(c)3 status there are additional reporting and compliance burdens that may delay or change disbursements, but we are working through them as fast as we can.

Just in case you didn't see it, please find the committee recommendation for your project below, and congratulations again!

The proposers are a group of blockchain enthusiasts who wish to promote the broader education of Zcash and Blockchain technologies. They propose to run, advertise, review, and survey custom workshops for the general public interested in learning about Zcash.

The promotion of inclusivity, and of using Zcash as a way to exercise the right to financial privacy, are core values of the Zcash Foundation, and outreach efforts are essential to these goals.

The proposers’ team has expertise in computer science, engineering and marketing. They provided a well-thought-out proposal and a good working plan for the creation of workshops along, with a reasonable budget for running them. They plan to utilize educational institutions to hold these workshops and will keep the community informed of the progress via various video and social media platforms. Full funding of this proposal is recommended.

@acityinohio acityinohio added the awarded label Nov 21, 2017

@techoluwoye

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techoluwoye commented Jan 25, 2018

Good morning @amiller ,

Happy new year, hope all is well! We have been working hard over here at Coincentrix into putting the actions and details form the proposal into reality. I would like to know will you be available early next week to go over some Zcash fundamentals and concepts that I would like to include into the materials I present. Next month I have 2 engagements pertaining to the grant and would love to just get some feedback from a Zcash Expert. I will be updating the community on the current progress each month starting with a January update and will like your insight on that swell. Please let me know when you are available to connect and sync.

Regards,

Oyedeji Oluwoye

@amiller

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Contributor

amiller commented Jan 25, 2018

Let's follow up by email, socrates1024@gmail.com

@techoluwoye

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techoluwoye commented Jan 25, 2018

@amiller thanks will send email!

@techoluwoye

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techoluwoye commented Feb 21, 2018

Dear Community members,
Just brief update from the Coincentrix Team. We are moving forward into the accordance with the schedule we have laid out in the grant.
Since the beginning of the year planning and workshop material have been created to meet the goals of the project. We have chosen 4 pilot schools with a possibility of 2 additional schools. Also we are doing a joint presentation with a local non profit organization in Birmingham Alabama at the town public library to reach awareness to local community members and high school students.We have our first order of Zcash foundation shirts to arrive as well as identified ambassadors at the 4 chosen schools to start the organizing of the events.
This month we have had calls with Andrew and Linda from Guarda to discuss points on the development of their ZCASH wallet and also  Josh Cincinnati to discuss our project progress, next steps and technical overview. In Birmingham Alabama this month we have 2 back to back presentations at University of Alabama Birmingham and Bessemer Public Library. We invited 2  local experts in the crypto space to come speak regarding mining and investments to involve local blockchain entrepreneurs and businesses. We believe local involvement by blockchain entrepreneurs, businesses and  enthusiasts is the key success tool to spread massive grassroots adoption of Zcash.  
For February we are on the active pursuit to push Zcash adoption sticking to our schedule and involving all fundamental parts of the blockchain ecosystem. We are scheduled to have calls with Jason davis and radix to get additional highlights on our presentation material as well as engage actively in the Zcash community.

I'll put all valuable updates here as well as Zcash forums to actively in the Zcash community!
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@techoluwoye

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techoluwoye commented Apr 18, 2018

Snippets of the 3 events completed.

UAB & Bessmer Public Library:

On February 22nd, we held an event that proved exciting and highly informative. We managed to collaborate with Siamese Dreams (a local non-profit), National Society of Black Engineers (NSBE) and Alabama Power. While at the University of Alabama Birmingham, experienced crypto experts came from across the state. Our speakers included Tyler Frost and Matthew Rizzio, who partnered with us to educate and relay their experiences within the space, as well as their individual interactions with Zcash. The crowd was relevant and alert, since it consisted of Alabama Power Engineers and students that showcased their interest by submitting survey data both preceding and following the event. Our full and complete debrief will be available end of month via Medium, Linkedin and Steemit. The Bessemer Public Library event was also a new experience since it exposed Zcash to a rural area of Birmingham, Alabama. Our survey data compared across regions emphasized that more outreach is necessary in often overlooked outskirts like these. We were continually told this was the first time individuals at the Bessemer Public Library had seen or heard of Blockchain, Cryptocurrency and Zcash.

Howard University:

On March 30th, we held a successful event in collaboration with the African Business Club and Howard Blockchain Labs. Hosted in Annex Seminar Room, the crowd and audience was very much engaged with the privacy aspects of Zcash and the impact of Blockchain technology in Africa. Howard is a Historical Black College University (HBCU) and the Eventbrite link also managed to attract local cryptocurrency enthusiasts that did not attend the college. Students and community members actively engaged by also submitting survey data both preceding and following the event.

After the event, surveys show the majority had an increased interest in utilizing Zcash while investing, even favoring Zcash over more popularized cyrptocurrencies like Bitcoin. Our full and complete debrief will also be available end of month via Medium, LinkedIn and Steemit.

In April, we have multiple events planned in both Nashville, Tennessee and Huntsville, Alabama. Currently, we have speaking events at Alabama A&M and Tennessee State University (TSU), as well as a community event in Nashville. This event will be hosted at Pluckerz, a local favored chicken restaurant that caters to millennials. After exposing this business to cryptocurrency and blockchain, the restaurant has now decided to enlist Zcash as a form of payment within the store for clients. This event will celebrate this addition to their payments platform and mark the beginning of Zcash purchases following the event. Plucerz serves as a direct example of our local strategy to promote buy-in from small businesses and expose them further to Zcash. Throughout this process, we will also make sure to update the MineZcash list for businesses accepting Zcash.

Please find attached samples of data we are currently analyzing to form a debrief outlining preceding and post-event insights, in addition to pictures and media resulting from the events.

Regards

Coincentrix Capital
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@techoluwoye

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techoluwoye commented May 1, 2018

On April 26th, 2018 we were invited by Dr. Chance Glenn the Dean of the College of Engineering at Alabama A&M University to participate and provide a 1-hour presentation on Zcash and Blockchain Fundamentals for the Dean Speaker Series. It was an opportunity for residents within Huntsville, AL and other areas of Madison County to share ideas, lessons learned, and listen to important topics from invited speakers within the Southern region. This event was featured as a spotlight on WAFF 48, a local news station, and promoted by Alabama A&M University’s public relations department. This event attracted a crowd of more than 100 people that consisted of faculty, students, and community business and residents. Attendees were excited to be exposed to Zcash and Blockchain technology that led to a lengthy Q&A segment that last an hour. Attendees asked questions such as “How do you see Zcash be utilized in everyday transactions? ”The Dean Speakers Series concluded with additional conversations about innovation and new opportunities that included integrating Zcash and Blockchain technology into student projects and course material within the College of Engineering. Several faculty members and residents from the community inquired about additional information and future collaborations. Below are several pictures from the Dean Speaker Series.
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@techoluwoye

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techoluwoye commented May 2, 2018

Just wanted to notify the community that while in Nashville TN USA our team had a very informative meeting with CEO David Bailey of BTC Media. After our talk David sent us Bitcoin magazines and Distributed Magazines to help enhance our ZCash Outreach Program!! Special Thanks to BTC Media staff for hosting us while we did a presentation at Tennessee State University.

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@techoluwoye

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@amiller

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amiller commented May 18, 2018

Hi, could you post the full exit survey you gave? I appreciate the sample of materials shown in the post, but I had a somewhat negative reaction to the sample questions included, especially "11 After this event will you invest in Zcash more than Bitcoin". That seems too much like marketing than education, and for an engineering or CS audience I'd hope for much more about technical interest or how likely they are to get involved in development. But I liked the report and if we could steer your metrics then I'd probably believe you could organize great events towards them. Just my 2 cents, Cheers,

@techoluwoye

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techoluwoye commented May 18, 2018

Good day @amiller attached is a draft of sample questions post presentation:

Post Surveys Zcash.docx

Thanks for the feedback because feedback is critical for better presentations.

Regards.

@pascalEiv

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pascalEiv commented May 31, 2018

Hello @amiller,

Thank you for your feedback. We look forward to improving the survey metrics to capture the necessary content for our initiative. Please consider, our audience was not limited to engineering or CS students. We are more focused on adoption at the general scale with focused on end users. Prior to finalizing our survey, we interacted with students in the various universities to understand what will interest them the most during our outreach session, based on their feedback, we developed the question found on the survey. We had no indentions of marketing.

@sonyamann

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sonyamann commented Jun 20, 2018

Heya @techoluwoye! I'm pinging all of the 2017 grant recipients for updates on their projects. Coincentrix has been pretty fantastic about updating us regularly, but I wonder if you can write a short general summary of the work you've done so far?

@techoluwoye

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techoluwoye commented Jun 20, 2018

@sonyamann hope all is well! Yes no problem @pascalEiv will update this thread today or tomorrow with the 6 month report and that should have all the updates on all the work we done over the months.

@pascalEiv

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pascalEiv commented Jun 23, 2018

Attached is the presentation deck
Zcash Outreach slides.pdf

Best Regards

@pascalEiv

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pascalEiv commented Jun 25, 2018

Hello all, @sonyamann
Zcash.Outreach.Six.Month.Report.pdf
Pre & Post Surveys .pdf

@tromer @acityinohio Attached is an updated version of last Fridays post which included the six month report and the survey details.

Please let me know if further elaboration is needed. I look forward to feedback from the community.

Best regard!

@pascalEiv

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pascalEiv commented Aug 24, 2018

Hello All,

I just want to inform the community I will be a panelist at the “Black Blockchain Summit” which will take place on 10-11th September at the Howard University Interdisciplinary Research Building, 2201 Georgia Ave NW Washington, DC 20059 (Event Flyer attached). If you are in the Area, please I encourage you to attend as we will highlight our involvements in our 2017 Zcash Outreach initiative. I also look forward to networking with community members in the DC area if possible. Please feel free to drop me an email (Info@coincentrix.io).

pascal ntsama

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