"A life-changing experience."
Kathy Doan '21 | San Diego, CA Major | Health, Medicine, and Society & Sociology
Minor | Marketing
As someone who is new to entrepreneurship, I came into LSV in hopes of surrounding myself around excitement, creativity, and passion. I’ve always been a hands-on learning girl and often found it hard to find my passion learning out of a textbook or in a classroom. Many different subjects spark my curiosity and interests, and I jump into any opportunity I believe would be beneficial to me, so I thought, why not give entrepreneurship a try?
To be given the opportunity to fly out to Silicon Valley and meet many inspiring, motivated, and successful business entrepreneurs has truly been a life-changing experience. I have never met anyone who can stand up in front of a large professional crowd and actually dig deep into their own raw life stories, talk about not only their successes, but the importance of their failures, and truly be genuine and candid in everything that they share. I can proudly say that most of these guest speakers were able to meet these standards and really wow the crowd in a very different and unique way. There was one speaker that stood out to me the most and that was Ryan Oksenhorn. Ryan is the founder of Zipline, a US medical product delivery company that builds, designs, and operates drone aircraft. These drones are responsible for delivering medical supplies such as blood and vaccines to under-developed countries who lack these resources. Ryan and his team is not only making an impact on the lives of others directly, but he is doing it on a global scale. This really resonated with me because one of the reasons why I decided to explore entrepreneurship was because of my abroad experience in Moldova, the poorest country in Europe, where I worked with many patients with cancer. I was devastated to see what these patients were going through due to the lack of resources in their country. After that, I was then motivated to innovate something to help these patients receive the best quality of life that they can. Ryan was able to reassure me that this passion and interest is possible and that the work I want to do is truly meaningful. Another chance to live and another chance to hope. That is the basis of what I hope to contribute to the field of medicine. My journey towards entrepreneurship makes this possible and reminds me that there is nothing I can’t do. If I was given the chance, I would love to ask Ryan, what fueled his ambition to tackle issues like these and how much more is he willing to go to improve his business further? This project has the potential to do so much and enact real significant change in the world.
So far, this trip has definitely exceeded my expectations and I am so excited to see what else the program has in store for me. Thank you to the Baker Institute for giving me this amazing opportunity to hear from notable names in Silicon Valley and to learn, grow, and explore myself on a deeper level as well as gain valuable insights on the different ways towards becoming a successful entrepreneur.