Do you dream of having your own startup? Are you curious to know what it would be like to work on a startup and wonder what you can do as a student to prepare? This session will feature current students, alums and faculty who can share their experiences, give you tips that they wish someone had shared with them, and answer your questions.
David Cooke is the President of Founders, University of Illinois’ premier student entrepreneurship nonprofit. A firm believer that people are an organization’s greatest asset, David specializes in empathetic leadership. This philosophy has helped him lead Founders to teach “entrepreneurship as a mindset” to Grainger, Gies, and other University students.
Brighten Godfrey is an Associate Professor in the Department of Computer Science at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. He also serves as a technical director on the Network Insight team at VMware, which he joined with the 2019 acquisition of Veriflow, a startup that commercialized UIUC-invented network verification technology. He is a winner of the ACM SIGCOMM Rising Star Award, the UIUC Dean's Award for Excellence in Research, the Sloan Research Fellowship, and the National Science Foundation CAREER Award.
Jewel Ifeguni is Founder and CEO of YouMatter Studios and is currently a Program Manager at Microsoft @ XBOX. She is a UIUC Alum, and her mission is to forefront and empower marginalized voices through tech and media. Currently, her studio's 6 time festival award winning film "TheDrive", a VR film addressing relations between police and communities, is now used in schools, organizations, and police stations around the country.
Ranjitha Kumar is an Associate Professor of Computer Science at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, where she leads the Data-Driven Design group. She is also the Chief Research Scientist at UserTesting, a market leader in digital user experience testing. Ranjitha received her PhD from the Computer Science Department at Stanford University in 2014, and was formerly the Chief Scientist at Apropose, Inc., a data-driven design company she founded that was backed by Andreessen Horowitz and New Enterprise Associates.
Sravya Patakota is a senior at UIUC studying Computer Science & Anthropology, and has been part of Founders - Illinois Entrepreneurs for 3 years starting off as 54 Co-Director and is now serving as Vice President. She is dedicated to promoting entrepreneurship to college students and empowering students to realize that it’s never too early to start their own startup.