Working with Technology by Terry Callahan

While Jason’s Computer Services (JCS) has helped Shore customers with a wide variety of technology-based needs for the past twenty years, owner Jason Lee has been involved with the ever-evolving world of technology since his teens.
“My uncle, Mike Swan, worked with my dad at Waverly Press. He always had a computer in his house, and I’d use it while the adults were talking,” says Jason. Another uncle, Tom Macey, used to work for IBM when everything started with computers, so Jason had hands-on opportunities to see what computers could do.
As for deciding to make this his career, he said, “I’d always be going around the neighborhood and people were starting to get computers.” At that time, computers were a “luxury item”. People would experience problems, such as connecting to printers. “I could fix the problem; it was simple to me.” Then people needed modems and few people knew how to install them in the computer. As the technology evolved, there was more and more need for technicians.
Meanwhile, Jason was helping neighbors for free. However, when he helped a neighbor type and print an important letter, the neighbor gave him fifty dollars. “That’s when I realized there was something to it [working on computers].”
There have been many new developments in IT (Information Technology) over the years. “Each day you come in and it evolves. The demand is huge; it just grows,” says Jason. “Ten years ago it was a lot simpler. It’s challenging.” For example, JCS has grown to six full-time employees. “For every one person hired, I interviewed fifty people. It takes fifty people to find one good one.”
“People run into difficulties in technology because they don’t know what things mean.”
Jason advises that people should get assistance when they “reach that point of frustration” or have been asked to do something and don’t know how to do that. Besides addressing computer problems and repairs, the technicians are all bonded and secure. They assist customers with filling in online forms such as medical, banking, and PDFs.
Technology issues are not the only challenges. “Working with people is the most challenging part. Every person is different; every problem is different. There’s no cookie-cutter for IT. They are similar, but it is different styles, ways of getting it, how it’s composed, how it’s structured. Calm the client down, take a deep breath, and we’ll fix it together.”
With COVID shutdowns there came new problems. “Everyone was sent home and they had to work from home. There was huge difficulty. No webcam, microphone, proper Internet or none at all, and only one computer but multiple students or needs.”
Community is very important to Jason. One initiative he supports is Talbot Goes Purple. Last month five percent of all proceeds from one week were donated to the program, which is particularly meaningful to Jason as he is in his sixteenth year of sobriety from alcohol addiction.
In other community support, for the past 15 years he has donated a laptop as a prize for the EHS After-Graduation Party. As part of WCEI Radio’s Back to School program, Jason donated a technology prize with a total value of $1500, comprised of a laptop, service policy and warranty.
In September and October Jason and his team have been participating in Chesapeake Forum, offering classes on “How to Get the Most Out of Your Cell Phone” (Oct. 9) and “Practical Security to Protect Against Online Threats” (Oct. 23 and 30). To Jason, this is a way to give back to the community and educate people on safety. “It’s a great program. I’m glad to be part of it.”
“I like what I do. What I enjoy most about working with computers is how it connects people. We’re always learning. There are always new programs coming along. The technology changes. I think my advantage is I was born and raised here and I have always served the community for twenty years. What I enjoy about working with clients is when I get little notes from customers every now and then and it means a lot and brings me back to center.”
Jason Lee may be contacted at Jason’s Computer Services, jcscomp.net or 410-820-9467. For more information on Chesapeake Forum and its courses, go to chesapeakeforum.org. Click on classes and scroll down to the class titles.