Cathy in Silicon Valley

January 7, 2017: Introduction

Hello! My name is Cathy Kuang, and I’m a junior at Wash. U., studying Marketing with a minor in Computer Science.

Next week, I’ll fly across the country to the San Francisco Bay Area for the Silicon Valley Road Show, a trip organized by the Career Center to visit several tech companies including Yelp, Square, Macy’, Google, the AT&T Foundry, Medallia and Tesla. I’m sure you’ve heard of most, if not all, of these companies as they’ve created products and services that have changed the way we live. This road show is an opportunity for a total of 26 Wash. U. students to meet the people behind the technology, tour the companies’ offices and learn what it’s like to work in Silicon Valley.

This won’t be the first time I make my way to the Bay Area to be exposed to the technology industry there, although it will be an invaluable experience. Having grown up in the Greater Boston area and now attending a university in St. Louis, I haven’t had many chances to visit the west coast, which is why spending this past summer in the Bay Area was a dream come true. For 10 weeks, I was an intern with an ed-tech startup in San Francisco and learned an immense amount about building an early-stage venture, working with a startup accelerator (a program that mentors entrepreneurs on developing their businesses) and using the design-thinking process.

After a design workshop hosted by Khan Academy.

Medium’s process for choosing its fonts, on display during San Francisco Design Week 2016 .

Mercedes-Benz concept car on display at Autodesk’s Gallery.

Spectra Hackathon at YouTube HQ.

Lunar Design’s Open Studio during San Francisco Design Week 2016.

Visiting Google’s Mountain View HQ.

Pitch session at Matter.

I’m excited to return to the Bay Area for this road show because it’ll be a chance to see a wider variety of tech companies in a short amount of time. Sure, there are movies like The Internship and shows like Silicon Valley, but I’ll bet 100 Bitcoins, one Razor scooter and a hoodie that the media exaggerates tech culture. I value this rare opportunity to speak with individuals who have first-hand experience with working and living in the world-famous hub of innovation that is Silicon Valley.

If you’re interested in following along, look out for two more blog posts coming soon!