Kai '17 Takes on Silicon Valley [3/21]

Students visited Facebook to meet with Lingyuan Keh' '13 and Kate Zyskowski '08. They also had dinner with Nina Chen '10 (Amazon) and Adam Smiley Poswolsky '05 (best-selling author). Tuesday's reflections are written by Gelsson Ortiz '18 and Maximo Lipman '20.

Gelsson's Reflection

Gelsson Ortiz '18 is a junior majoring in Economics but also completing certificates in Applied Data Science and Informatics and Modeling. Even though he's not a film major, Gelsson hopes to some day make films and express his artistic side that Wesleyan's community has helped grow. In addition to filmmaking, he hopes to publish a few books in his lifetime and has already finished a rough draft of a fiction piece that he hopes to publish right after graduating from college.

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I truly appreciated the opportunity to visit Facebook on Tuesday. Having Lingyuan Ke and Lisa Sy from Facebook show us around created a more intimate environment than if we had another employee who wasn’t a Wesleyan alum show us around. I appreciated having the opportunity to get to talk to them about what they had studied at Wesleyan and their recommendations for what I should do starting now if I hope to work for Facebook someday. I wish we had more time to look around and ask more questions but I did appreciate visiting the Facebook campus in addition to having the space to ask questions and hear what Lingyuan and Lisa had to say about their experiences at Facebook. It was good to know that one could land a great job without having a college degree at Facebook since before the visit I expected almost everyone there to have a master’s degree or PhD. I knew that Facebook was a successful company but I didn’t how much the employees benefitted from the company’s success.

    What I really like about the dinners is that we can ask the questions that we wouldn’t be able to ask in a professional setting. We, as well as the speakers, can be upfront about our concerns or anything that piques our interest. Because of my own aspirations and plans, I really liked talking to and hearing what Adam Smiley Poswolsky had to say regarding his experience as a writer and what he did to become successful. Nina Chen from Amazon also instilled us the idea that we shouldn’t stress so much about finding a job or internship as we are right now because things will eventually work out in the end if we are working on something we are passionate about. Adam especially accentuates this in the talk we had that night and in the first few pages of his book which has allowed me to consider other career or job opportunities in addition to the ones I already have in mind now that I know that it’s all right to not have a traditionally stable career path. I felt like we heard more from Adam towards the end but I appreciated how we both broke off into two parts so that the people who wanted to ask Nina more questions had the opportunity to do so and the people who wanted to keep talking to Adam also had the same opportunity. I’d recommend Kai Wesleyan to reach out to all four Wesleyan alums for next year’s trip because these four alums have made this trip worth it.
 

Maximo's Reflection

Maximo Lipman is a First Year expecting to major in Sociology. He is curious about how sociology and other social sciences and humanities based disciplines can become integrated into the entrepreneurial and tech world. He looks forward to continuing to find creative ways to bridge his academic interests into business. 

I truly appreciated the opportunity to visit Facebook on Tuesday. Having Lingyuan Ke and Lisa Sy from Facebook show us around created a more intimate environment than if we had another employee who wasn’t a Wesleyan alum show us around. I appreciated having the opportunity to get to talk to them about what they had studied at Wesleyan and their recommendations for what I should do starting now if I hope to work for Facebook someday. I wish we had more time to look around and ask more questions but I did appreciate visiting the Facebook campus in addition to having the space to ask questions and hear what Lingyuan and Lisa had to say about their experiences at Facebook. It was good to know that one could land a great job without having a college degree at Facebook since before the visit I expected almost everyone there to have a master’s degree or PhD. I knew that Facebook was a successful company but I didn’t how much the employees benefitted from the company’s success.

 

    What I really like about the dinners is that we can ask the questions that we wouldn’t be able to ask in a professional setting. We, as well as the speakers, can be upfront about our concerns or anything that piques our interest. Because of my own aspirations and plans, I really liked talking to and hearing what Adam Smiley Poswolsky had to say regarding his experience as a writer and what he did to become successful. Nina Chen from Amazon also instilled us the idea that we shouldn’t stress so much about finding a job or internship as we are right now because things will eventually work out in the end if we are working on something we are passionate about. Adam especially accentuates this in the talk we had that night and in the first few pages of his book which has allowed me to consider other career or job opportunities in addition to the ones I already have in mind now that I know that it’s all right to not have a traditionally stable career path. I felt like we heard more from Adam towards the end but I appreciated how we both broke off into two parts so that the people who wanted to ask Nina more questions had the opportunity to do so and the people who wanted to keep talking to Adam also had the same opportunity. I’d recommend Kai Wesleyan to reach out to all four Wesleyan alums for next year’s trip because these four alums have made this trip worth it.