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  • Writer's pictureBaker Institute Team

"Dive in and crush everything that’s given to you."

David Aitchison '20 | FinTech Major| Industrial Engineering

Hometown | Bethlehem, PA

Today the LehighSiliconValley cohort and I visited VMware and spent the day with Tom Gillis, Senior Vice President and General Manager of Network and Security. He brought in a few very successful entrepreneurs from various disciplines and stages of startup development. All of the speakers had very interesting stories and lots of great advice. A small snippet from Mr. Gillis really caught my attention. He advised us not to worry about our titles or roles, but to just “dive in and crush everything that’s given to you.” This resonated with me because I’m always worried about grades and getting a job after graduation. He explained that in startups there is usually a lot of visibility, and with that, comes true meritocracy. Although I don’t know if I’m going to work in Silicon Valley or even at a startup, this advice will ring true in most places, even if it takes some time. It makes a difference to hear the advice from someone with great experience and gives me confidence that if I work hard enough and do great work, people will notice; I can get where I want to go.

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