When André van der Hoek, chair of the Department of Informatics, received an email from the venture capital firm Kleiner Perkins about its Fellows Program, he sent out his own email, notifying students of this opportunity to work with Silicon Valley companies. “Andre sent an email to the informatics department encouraging students to apply to the KP fellowship,” recalls Emma Anderson, a fourth-year informatics student. Anderson applied and will now be joining Zumper, an apartment rental startup, as a KP Fellow.
“When I did my final interview with Zumper, I knew this was the company I wanted to work with,” she says, noting that she signed the offer letter the same day she received it. “I knew that if I took this job, I’d be able to make a positive impact with my code.” Anderson will be working on Zumper’s iOS team, further developing their mobile application. She also plans to network with other KP Fellows.
“I’m excited to meet the other fellows and form a network where we can support each other’s business ventures,” she says. “My hope is that we will grow together as innovators.”
In addition to gaining real-world experience working with a KP partner company, KP Fellows have access to entrepreneurial workshops, a founder speaker series with CEOs and executives, a variety of community events, and a large alumni network of tech leaders. All of these opportunities fit in well with Anderson’s long-term goal of one day having her own startup focused on feminine health technology, such as period-tracking apps and birth control services. “My dream is to build my own business developing femtech,” she says. “I want to work in an all-female team designing products by women, for women.”
— Shani Murray