It’s been a year since we have sat in the studio — less than a year since our team met to move our stuff out. But, what I said in the Twitter reply still stuck in the back of my head, “Our community is still strong.” And then it hit me. Like, hit me with a box of tissues, I’m crying, hit me. The IBM Studios Slack channel received a message from our sister studio in Böblingen, Germany. The studio leader had organized a Box folder of unscripted, personal, and heartfelt video messages from our studio mates. Many of them were people I trained, currently mentor, or leadership peers. The studio brought us together, yes. But, I realized through all of the virtual meetings, conversations, and late-night brainstorming that we formed a community.

Earlier this week, I caught the news that Building 903 on the IBM Austin campus suffered massive damage caused by flooding on the roof. All floors were destroyed, including 7 and 8, home of IBM Design. It feels like such a great loss as a tremendous amount of magic happened there, including the professional development of thousands of new designers from all over the world.

Oen Michael Hammonds, one of the greats to come out of the IBM Design program, wrote this thoughtful post reminding me, reminding us all, that though a place may break, the community is steadfast and strong. I am so thankful to have been a part of that community. I hope they’ll gather again soon and bring back the fantastic energy that the program brought to the building.

XOXOXO to my friends from IBM Design—I miss y’all.