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understanding a variety of career paths

Strava Co-Founder and Executive Chairman Mark Gainey @ ETL

Mark Gainey is the co-founder and executive chairman of Strava, which launched in 2009 as a web platform that allowed cyclists to track their rides via GPS devices. Two years later, Strava had only around 5,000 members, but soon the rise of GPS-enabled mobile phones and wearable fitness trackers kicked the company into high gear. A decade later, propelled by five fundraising rounds that have brought in $72 million, Strava has grown into a platform where more than 50 million athletes around the world communicate, track their workouts and compare their stats.

Voicea Founder Omar Tawakol @ ETL

Backed by corporate investors that included Cisco, Google, Microsoft and Salesforce, Omar Tawakol founded Voicea in 2017, and served as the company’s CEO until its acquisition by Cisco in September 2019. Voicea’s core offering is EVA, the most widely adopted in-meeting AI assistant. EVA records and transcribes meetings, generates highlights, and pushes relevant meeting content to productivity tools like Slack and Microsoft Teams. 

Cala Health Founder and Chief Scientific Officer Kate Rosenbluth @ ETL

As a Stanford Biodesign Innovation Fellow, Kate Rosenbluth was captivated by the unmet need to treat hand tremors. She discovered that the site of deep brain stimulation was accessible through the peripheral nerves in the wrist, and teamed up with Scott Delp, director of the Stanford Neuromuscular Biomechanics Lab, to found Cala Health, where she is now the chief scientific officer. The company’s wearable neuromodulation therapies merge neuroscience research with cutting-edge technology to deliver individualized peripheral nerve stimulation.

Octave Bioscience Co-Founder and COO Melinda Thomas @ ETL

Drawing on her experience starting and leading health companies like CardioDx and ParAllele, Melinda Thomas co-founded Octave Bioscience in 2014. Octave is developing a care management platform for neurodegenerative diseases, starting with multiple sclerosis. The company aims to improve patient management decisions and create better outcomes while also lowering costs.

Patreon Co-Founder and CTO Sam Yam @ ETL

In 2013, Sam Yam teamed up with his former Stanford roommate Jack Conte to create Patreon, a platform that connects content creators with members who provide recurring revenue. As co-founder and CTO, Yam has built Patreon into a service that has funded more than one hundred thousand creatives, channelling an estimated one billion dollars to musicians, podcasters, and artists of all kinds. 

Career Accelerator: Connect, Communicate, and Translate Your Academic Skills into Diverse Careers: Session 2

This interactive, two-session workshop provides tools and processes for PhD students to identify and communicate professional interests and transferable skills for careers beyond the professoriate. You will explore your interests and skills, translate your current experiences to audiences outside of academia, and initiate a plan to develop professional connections. You will work out your ideas in conversation with your graduate peers. The workshop will be especially useful for students who are early in their exploration of careers. 

Career Accelerator: Connect, Communicate, and Translate Your Academic Skills into Diverse Careers: Session 1

This interactive, two-session workshop provides tools and processes for PhD students to identify and communicate professional interests and transferable skills for careers beyond the professoriate. You will explore your interests and skills, translate your current experiences to audiences outside of academia, and initiate a plan to develop professional connections. You will work out your ideas in conversation with your graduate peers. The workshop will be especially useful for students who are early in their exploration of careers. 

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