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BS/MEng Mechanical Engineering
Clifton Park NY

30,000 Feet

(May 18 2012) Written by: Alissa Anderson in Co-op

Hey Future RIT  -

 

Currently checking in from 30,000 feet - shout out to @SouthWestAir an onboard WiFi. This weekend marks the midpoint of my co-op block in California. For those of you who have been following me over the years, you will recall that I am a huge supporter of the 10 week co-op. I advocate for testing out as many companies, in as many location as possible during your degree process. I have seen everything from submarines, to grenade launchers, to the inside of consumer electronics; and I have done so in locations on both the west and east coast. I think variety, especially in your second and third years, is helpful in finding your focus in the major and choosing upper level technical courses. Now, though I have had great success with the ten-week-sprint, I am SO grateful I committed to six months for my final block. It has taken me a couple months to fully grasp, understand, and love my work... now that I have that in check -- it is time to explore the area and see what Silicon Valley has to offer.

 

One of the most attractive traits that brought me to Silicon Valley is the constant technology turn over. The start-up community amazes me. I have a huge appreciation for the passion of entrepreneurs and their ability to funnel their energy into into a consumable product. The concept boggles my mind. I have found that the Bay Area is full of dreams and wanna-be CEOs who network for a living. If you look online, you can find “fireside chats with (insert-big-name-tech-guru), CEO of (insert-name-of-the-hottest-tech-company-this-week)”, innovation panels, dinners, and mingle sessions every day. Last week I attended an event at the Mountain View Computer Museum that focused on the importance of corporate culture. Event panelists included the founders of TaskRabbit and EventBrite - both had amazing start-up stories and views on the idea of “corporate culture” and how they incorporate it into the growth of their companies. These events are like college campuses... a community of dream seekers, but instead of everyone exploring different majors, the valley is concentrated in technology and tech applications. After the event I met dozens of established and up-and-coming founders / techies; listened to abstract company ideas; brainstormed potential app names... it’s amazing to see what people are developing.

 

Hopefully there will be more of these event for me in the future! I have my fingers crossed for tickets to the next Bay Area Geek Girl Dinner... host at FaceBook HQ (who wouldn’t want to have dinner at FB?).

 

 

It’s almost landing time - until next time,

Ali

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