What do you do?
As CEO, I'm responsible for guiding the vision and driving results at my startup, KÜDZOO. KÜDZOO is an app that rewards students for their hard work with access to opportunities and gift cards.
Why did you choose this field?
I was struck by an idea to leverage the high mobile usage of smartphones for good. I then saw the correlation of the rising depression rates in teens and high mobile usage, mostly caused by social media. I wanted to create an app that provides mindful consumption instead of mindless consumption. KÜDZOO aims to advance students through recognition.
I am the most motivated when I work for something greater than myself, whether it was on a sports team growing up or a congressional campaign. Now, I get the opportunity to drive a positive social change for a living!
What do you look at and think, "I wish younger me would have known this was possible"?
Be the CEO. I always thought that I was somehow lacking. Whether it was inexperience, network or skillset.
Always be willing to try your best. You may not always be successful - failures lead to learning experiences. Achievements that my younger self would be proud of would include building a resource for over half a million students nationwide and being recognized by Forbes 30 under 30 in Education.
Why do you love working in STEM?
STEM encourages you to explore. I feel excited each day that I work in a space where curiosity is a strength. By staying curious, you can problem solve and advance your product with your team. Collaboration and the exchange of ideas daily in STEM are what excites me along with the perpetual innovation.
Best advice for next generation?
Perfectionism leads to procrastination. The only difference between you and those who make a difference is that they decided to go for it. Always prepare, but do not for a second think you're not qualified.
Inspo quote / fun fact / role model
Patty McCord (former Chief Talent Officer at Netflix) she has an incredible way of valuing the people at her company while driving progress.