Well, that was fast..
Around 16 years of structure, safety, and guided advising are now behind myself along with all those who graduate every semester. We are released into the wild with wide-eyed dreams, goals and expectations of ourselves in a much more realistic perspective in our (hopefully) matured minds. Although many of our dreams of becoming Olympic Racewalkers or Rhythmic Gymnasts may not come true at this point our lives (both are actual Olympic sports), we all have to move on at some point to figure out what is next.
The answer of what my plans were after graduation has always been stuck between three serious options:
- Hopping 4 A Cure (Full Time)
- Pursue an MBA
- Job with Corporate Company/Startup
Each option had their own pro’s and con’s. Each one appealed highly to who I am and who I want to become.
5-10 Year Goals: Run or Manage a (Corporate) Business Accelerator; Continue growing Hopping 4 A Cure
Hopping 4 A Cure is my baby. I will not let it flounder stop without serious help and dedication. Following a recommendation to read the book ‘Good To Great‘ by my mentor/friend Julian, I became somewhat obsessed with becoming this Level 5 Leader and how to leave an organization in the hands of people who will make it better than when you left. Graduating would ultimately end my run of President of the Hopping 4 A Cure at UF Student Organization, however I do not think I could ever drop my involvement with everything and move on so quickly.
The idea of an MBA has always been in the back of my mind through conversations with family and older friends. It wasn’t until a conversation with a couple high-level execs during my time at Walt Disney World where I learned how important the MBA can be in a corporate environment, and potentially even a detriment in certain startup/entrepreneurial environments.
As an involved business major at UF, I was not as worried about being employed after my 4 years but rather who I would be employed with and what I would be doing in that company. I was lucky enough to develop relatively deep relationships with a couple recruiters in a number of companies that hire large amounts of UF Business Graduates and even though I knew those companies weren’t what I was looking for, some of them weren’t afraid to tell me flat out ‘You do not want to work for us’ or a variation of ‘You won’t have enough autonomy/freedom to be entrepreneurial with us’ ( thank you to those recruiters if any of you are reading this post). That said, I was open to working with a large corporation as long as I am in a position outside my comfort zone where I’d be learning about an area of interest that can add value to myself, my future, and potentially Hopping 4 A Cure. The location also played a huge factor in this option.
When it came to working with another startup ‘full time’, an option I heavily weighed, the major roadblock became where to draw the line between working on/with a startup company whose mission/vision/product I believed in and working on Hopping 4 A Cure. At the end of the day, I did not want to feel guilty about working on my own ‘Startup’ and promoting that more at events than a friend’s company. I simply did not want to blur lines and wear too many hats in multiple small organizations.
- To anyone looking for a job, I do HIGHLY recommend looking into Gainesville Startups!
- Feathr is looking to hire Intelligent Humans #16 – #20
Until this point I have only told some friends & family about my plans and potential offers/options I had to pick between and I am glad to share with the world and inter-webs that I will be joining the Intel Corporation, based in Santa Clara California, in October reporting to a Marketing Manager, on a team creating new stories of why millennials would/should buy new technology platforms, specifically 2 in 1 laptops.
Intel has been going through a major restructuring process and many of the friends I’ve made during my internship last year have been let go, however I’ve been keeping up to date on what the future looks like for the company/industry as a whole and Intel looks to be making smart decisions in the areas of Augment
ed Reality, Virtual Reality, and Internet of Things.
With the long-term goal of running or managing a Business Accelerator (preferably corporate like the Disney Accelerator), this position allows me to truly dive into the tech space, giving em the opportunity to learn as much as possible, meet incredible individuals, and relocate me to the heart of Silicon Valley.
I officially move out to Santa Clara and start my job on October 10th!
Between now and October, I will be embarking on an AWESOME adventure through South and Central America. As I mentioned in a post from January called, ‘How 2015 Sucked & Why I’m Excited For 2016‘ I listed 6 countries to visit and I’ll be knocking 2 of those out in the next 2 months while adding in a couple along the way!
If ANY of you reading this would like to meet up or join me on a portion of the trip, you are more than welcome! If you or anyone you know have family or a place I could stay during any part of this trip, please, please, PLEASE reach out and let me know!! Any help or support would greatly be appreciated.
As Numbered Above:
- Medellin, Colombia
- San Andres & Providencia, Colombia
- Costa Rica
- Cancun/Yucatan Peninsula
- Mexico City
- Los Angeles, CA
- Santa Clara, CA
My plan is that I really do not have a plan. All I know is that I have a plane ticket leaving Florida on Monday August 22nd for Colombia where I’ll be meeting up with one of my best friends, Connor, who has lived in Colombia for almost a year. (If you ever want to learn Spanish, Connor learned the language in ONE MONTH and now runs a company offering UNLIMITED Spanish tutoring for $99/Month – https://baselang.com/ )
Following my visit with Connor, I would love to make it out to San Andres and Providencia islands (also Colombia), located off the coast of Nicaragua. This came highly recommended by another friend Matt who went and made this cool YouTube video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SBDKidWfaEI . Matt is a badass, inspiring guy as well, read his blog, https://www.differenthunger.com/ or view his design portfolio at https://mattkohn.me/
Next, I leave Colombia for Costa Rica. In Costa Rica I may meet up with a couple friends friends but will primarily be finding a beach and living like the locals in an Airbnb or Couchsurfing location.
Following Costa Rica, I go north into Honduras where I reconnect with some friends I made during my internship at Disney and potentially meet up with a friend from Gainesville to celebrate his birthday and Honduras’ Independence Day!! Can’t wait to go Scuba Diving, Zip Lining, and chasing waterfalls even though the 90’s girl group, TLC, has warned all of us already..
I’ll end the Central American stretch of the trip in Mexico’s Yucatan Peninsula and potentially Mexico City if possible. I’d love to explore the ruins and learn about the old civilizations that inhabited that area. Maybe I’ll see a live viewing of Mel Gibson’s Apocalypto while I’m there! (Only joking..)
Wherever I am the first week of October is where I’ll be taking a flight back into the US and spend a few days with my brother in Los Angeles before I drive up the Pacific Coast Highway and begin my job in Santa Clara!
In total, the whole trip will last around 6 weeks, include at least 4 countries, and many awesome stories to share. Hopefully I’ll be able to pick up Spanish finally after years of classes in High School..
Thank you for reading! If you would like to meet up before I leave on my adventure, for any portion of my trip, or once I arrive in California, PLEASE let me know!! I’d be more than happy to say hello and reconnect!