My Learnings from Tech Inclusion
Post by Yulkendy Valdez ’17
There is something about the tech industryâ€”beyond its appetite for innovation and highly-intelligent people that are always searching for the next big thingâ€”that appeal to me. The tech sector is always daring to change, faster than its counterparts, both internally and externally. Attending Tech Inclusion in San Francisco helped me understand this and more.
Tech Inclusion in Silicon Valley is one of the biggest think tanks for enabling conversations around diversity and inclusion across the private and public sector. Attending Tech Inclusion this year has been pivotal in my entrepreneurship journey, because it has allowed me to pitch to top executives across Pinterest, Asana, SnapChat, Airbnb, Google, and more. I have gotten to pitch to top VCs from 500 Startups focused on funding underrepresented entrepreneurs such as myself. Needless to say, this conference has been extremely valuable to my growth and general sense of excitement as an entrepreneur.
I am really excited that Babson is investing in tech entrepreneurship for its students whether it is through the Semester Away Program in San Francisco or funding student attendance at conferences like this one through the Undergraduate Professional Accelerator Fund. I was really ecstatic that my classmate, Akeem Allen, was there as well, and we got to share a very unique experience outside the classroom that nurtured our love for entrepreneurship and social impact.
I am really passionate about building inclusive workplaces that are catered to the needs of all kinds of people regardless of how they identify. 30% of the population are people of color, yet only 3% of senior level positions are Black and Latino. We have a leadership gap, and our workplace cultures have to be adapted to create opportunities for people that have been typically underrepresented across the corporate sector. Once you get to the tech sector, the numbers are even more terrifying but going to Tech Inclusion reassured me that with the right roadmap, we can start building more diverse and equitable cultures where all kinds of people can flourish.